WOBURN, MASSACHUSSETTS – Frequency Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq: FREQ), a clinical stage biotechnology company focused on harnessing the body’s innate biology to repair or reverse damage caused by a broad range of degenerative diseases, today announced the appointment of Kevin Franck, Ph.D., as Senior Vice President of Strategic Marketing and New Product Planning.
Dr. Franck will lead pre-commercial strategy and launch planning for Frequency’s clinical pipeline, including its lead program aimed at developing a restorative treatment for sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL), the most common form of hearing loss.
Experienced Leader in Hearing Healthcare
Dr. Franck is a leader in the hearing field with 25 years of experience including the development and commercialization of medical devices for people with hearing loss. A licensed audiologist, Dr. Franck joins Frequency from Massachusetts Eye and Ear, where he served as Director of Audiology and Harvard Medical School Faculty of the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. Prior to Mass Eye and Ear, he was Head of Marketing for Bose Hear, a division of Bose Corporation, where he led new product management and channel marketing of an emerging category of business focused on hearing loss. Dr. Franck co-founded Ear Machine, a startup funded by the National Institutes of Health before it was acquired by Bose in 2014.
He has also held senior roles at Cochlear Ltd., Artisan Healthcare Consulting and BiOM and worked as a clinician at the University of Michigan and the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
“We are thrilled to have Kevin join Frequency. He has dedicated his career to improving the lives of those with hearing loss by advancing innovative technologies to market, through his work in research, commercial marketing, advocacy and as a clinician. Our objective is to help hundreds of millions of people globally with sensorineural hearing loss to more clearly hear speech and sound and to better communicate. Kevin’s leadership will be critical as we advance our lead candidate FX-322 in pivotal clinical trials and prepare for potential commercialization in the US, and with our partner Astellas in the rest of the world.”
–David Lucchino, Frequency’s President and CEO
Dr. Franck holds an MBA in Healthcare Management from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, a Ph.D. in hearing science from the University of Washington, an MSE in biomedical engineering from Johns Hopkins University and a B.A. in engineering from Dartmouth College. He is the incoming Board Chair of the Hearing Loss Association of America.
“I’m excited to join Frequency at this important time and contribute to advancing the field toward hearing regeneration,” said Dr. Franck. “Currently available hearing devices have been an incomplete solution and many patients continue to struggle to understand speech and with sound clarity. Repairing the underlying damage that is the primary cause of acquired hearing loss has always been the ultimate objective, and Frequency may be on the cusp of addressing this ambitious goal.”
Frequency’s lead product candidate FX-322 is designed to treat the underlying cause of SNHL by regenerating sensory hair cells through activation of progenitor cells already present in the cochlea. Sensory hair cells are responsible for amplifying, filtering, tuning and converting sounds, enabling people to clearly understand sounds and speech.
The company plans to share interim day-90 group-level data from its Phase 2a study of FX-322 late in Q1 2021, and is planning an end-of-study data read-out in late Q2 2021.
About Frequency Therapeutics
Frequency Therapeutics is a leader in the development of medicines designed to activate progenitor cells within the body to treat degenerative diseases. The company’s progenitor cell activation (PCA) approach stimulates progenitor cells to create functional tissue with the aim of developing disease modifying therapies. The company’s lead product candidate, FX-322, is designed to regenerate auditory hair cells to restore hearing function. In an FX-322 Phase 1/2 study, statistically significant and clinically meaningful improvements in key measures of hearing function in patients with sensorineural hearing loss were observed. FX-322 is being evaluated in an ongoing Phase 2a clinical study in patients with sensorineural hearing loss. The company also is evaluating additional diseases where its PCA approach could create functional tissue, including a discovery program in multiple sclerosis. Headquartered in Woburn, Mass., Frequency has a license and collaboration agreement with Astellas Pharma Inc. for FX-322, for which it retains U.S. rights, as well as additional collaboration and licensing agreements with academic and nonprofit research organizations including The Scripps Research Institute, Cambridge Enterprises Limited, Massachusetts Eye and Ear, Mass General Brigham and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Source: Frequency Therapeutics