SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif, June 25, 2020 – Meissa Vaccines (“Meissa”), a biotechnology company developing vaccines to prevent viral respiratory infections, announced today that the company has appointed Robert Jordan, Ph.D. Vice President, Research and Development. Dr. Jordan has more than 20 years of virology research and antiviral drug development experience in both academia and industry. He was most recently Director, Virology at Vir Biotechnology, and previous to that, he was Director, Biology at Gilead Sciences.
“Rob is joining Meissa at a critical point as we have just completed initial clinical studies for our first vaccine candidate for respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), validating our vaccine technology platform, and are now rapidly advancing a COVID-19 vaccine candidate that is designed to be a safe, effective, and economical vaccine for global use,” said Martin Moore, Ph.D., cofounder and CEO of Meissa. “We are excited to add to the team Rob’s deep experience in respiratory diseases, including coronavirus and RSV, and success in advancing preclinical antiviral drug candidates from research through approval.”
“I am impressed with not only the technology but also the tenacity of Meissa’s team to solve key problems in vaccine development to deliver vaccines that can be used on a global scale to protect against deadly respiratory diseases, from RSV to COVID-19,” said Dr. Jordan. “I’ve hit the ground running to meet the team’s brisk pace to rapidly advance our vaccine candidates in clinical trials.”
At Gilead Sciences, Dr. Jordan was responsible for the discovery and development of antiviral therapies, including remdesivir, for the treatment of diseases caused by respiratory viruses and emerging and neglected viruses. Prior to Gilead, he was Director, Virology at Siga Technologies, where he developed tecovirimat for treatment of smallpox that was approved in 2018 under the FDA “animal rule.” Previous to that, Dr. Jordan was Principal Scientist at Viropharma, where he developed antiviral research programs for hepatitis C virus and biodefense. Dr. Jordan received a Ph.D. in biochemistry from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, a B.S. in biochemistry from Penn State University. He did his post-doctoral training in virology at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Jordan is an author on more than a hundred peer-reviewed research publications in virology and immunology, is on the editorial board of Antiviral Research, and has held adjunct faculty positions at Oregon State University and Drexel University.
About Meissa Vaccines
Meissa is a private biotechnology company focused on the advancement of vaccines for respiratory viruses. Meissa was founded on proprietary technologies employing reverse genetics for rational design of more effective live attenuated vaccines. The technology is exclusively licensed from Emory University and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Dr. Moore, together with Dr. Roderick Tang, a vaccine biotech expert, cofounded Meissa. They are supported by a team with extensive experience in all aspects of vaccine development. Meissa is currently a resident company at Johnson & Johnson Innovation – JLABS in South San Francisco.