insitro Adds Biopharma Industry Leader Roger Perlmutter as First Independent Board Member

SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–insitro, a machine-learning driven drug discovery and development company, today announced the appointment of Roger Perlmutter, M.D., Ph.D., executive vice president and president of Merck Research Laboratories, Merck’s global R&D organization, as the company’s first independent board director.

“We are thrilled to welcome Roger to insitro’s Board of Directors,” said Daphne Koller, Ph.D., founder and chief executive officer of insitro. “Few people in our industry are as respected and visionary as Roger Perlmutter. His extensive experience in the industry and deep insights throughout the pharmaceutical R&D value chain will be highly valuable as we enter our next stage of development, leveraging our platform to begin building and progressing our internal therapeutics pipeline.”

As the executive vice president of Merck, Inc. and president of Merck Research Laboratories, Dr. Perlmutter played a key role in the approval and development of the breakthrough immunotherapy treatment Keytruda®. Prior to Merck, Dr. Perlmutter was executive vice president and head of research and development at Amgen, where he was responsible for the registration of ten new drugs in the areas of oncology, endocrinology, hematology, inflammation and osteoporosis, including Sensipar™, Prolia™ and Xgeva™. Previously, Dr. Perlmutter worked at Merck Research Laboratories in roles of increasing responsibility, including as executive vice president of worldwide basic research and preclinical development. Prior to his career in biopharma, Dr. Perlmutter was a professor in the departments of immunology, biochemistry and medicine at the University of Washington, Seattle, and served as chairman of the department of immunology and an investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Dr. Perlmutter holds a B.A. from Reed College in Portland, Oregon, and received his M.D. and Ph.D. from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. He pursued his clinical training in internal medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston and at the University of California, San Francisco.

“I have long believed that innovation prospers when one assembles people and ideas from different disciplines,” said Dr. Perlmutter. “In doing just that, insitro, with its emphasis on sophisticated data generation and analysis, is strategically positioned to spearhead a new approach to drug discovery that should permit better therapeutics to emerge both more rapidly and at lower cost. As a board member, I am keen to contribute to the realization of this transformative approach to biopharmaceutical R&D.”

“Roger’s expertise and experience will help propel insitro toward becoming a true drug development company,” said Robert Nelsen, insitro board member and co-founder and managing director at ARCH Venture Partners. “We look forward to working together towards realizing the vision of transforming drug discovery with machine learning and data at scale.”

About insitro

insitro is a data-driven drug discovery and development company using machine learning and high-throughput biology to transform the way that drugs are discovered and delivered to patients. The company is applying state-of-the-art technologies from bioengineering to create massive data sets that enable the power of modern machine learning methods to be brought to bear on key bottlenecks in pharmaceutical R&D. The resulting predictive models are used to accelerate target selection, to design and develop effective therapeutics, and to inform clinical strategy. The company is located in South San Francisco, CA. For more information on insitro, please visit the company’s website at or connect on LinkedIn and Twitter.


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