Our team has years of neurology drug discovery and development experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology arenas and is supported by world-class scientific founders and advisors.

head shot of Rita Balice-Gordon

Rita Balice-Gordon, PhD

Chief Executive Officer

Rita brings 30 years of experience in neuroscience research, drug discovery and development from senior leadership roles in biopharma and a distinguished academic research career.

Prior to joining Muna, she led small molecule, biologics and gene therapy programs in neurologic, neurodegenerative and rare genetic diseases at Sanofi, psychiatry and pain programs at Pfizer, and was Professor of Neuroscience at the University of Pennsyvlania School of Medicine.

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Anders Hinsby, PhD

Chief Operating Officer

Anders brings 25 years of experience in biotech leadership and venture capital investment.

Prior to joining Muna, he co-founded and was the CEO of Orphazyme, where he created an ambitious and mature clinical stage pipeline in rare protein misfolding and lysosomal storage diseases.

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Niels Plath, PhD

Chief Scientific Officer

Niels brings more than 15 years of experience in neuroscience-focused R&D in the pharmaceutical industry and academia.

Prior to joining Muna, he led small molecule and biologics portfolio projects and teams discovering and developing therapeutics for neurological and psychiatric disorders at Lundbeck.

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Jakob Busch-Petersen, PhD

Chief Development Officer

Jakob brings 25 years of experience in small molecule medicinal chemistry, drug discovery and technology in biopharma.

Prior to joining Muna, he was the head of small molecule external innovation at Roche, where he was responsible for identifying and developing novel early stage therapeutic and technology programs with external partners.

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Elizabeth Birch, PhD

Head of Business Development

Liz has more than 10 years of experience at the intersection of science and business.

Prior to joining Muna, she developed a solid grounding in CNS disease as the VP of Business Development at Neumora Therapeutics and was a VC investor and management consultant. Liz thrives on the challenge of translating complex scientific concepts into a compelling value proposition, helping investors and partners to see the vast potential of transformative scientific innovation.

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Manuela Polydoro, PhD

Head of Translational Medicine

Manuela has more than 10 years of experience in neurodegeneration research, drug discovery and development in pharma and biotech

Prior to joining Muna, she led and managed cross-functional teams developing treatments for neurodegenerative and neuromuscular diseases at Novartis, Amgen and startup biotech companies.

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Lars Christian Roenn, PhD

Head of Preclinical Biology

Lars has more than 20 years of R&D experience in biotech and pharma, focused on neurodegeneration and rare diseases.

Prior to joining Muna, he led several CNS drug discovery programs and teams at NeuroSearch, Roche and Lundbeck.

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Joachim Vilstrup, PhD

Head of Protein Chemistry and Structural Biology

Joachim has more than 10 years of experience in protein chemistry and early-stage drug discovery in academia and biotech, focused on cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases.

Joachim is a scientific co-founder of Muna and holds a PhD in protein chemistry and structural biology. Prior to joining Muna he led protein chemistry, structural biology and biophysics teams in an early stage small molecule drug development company.

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Maria Dalby, PhD

Head of Bioinformatics

Maria has more than 10 years of experience in bioinformatics, focused on genetics and transcriptional regulation in healthy and diseased brains.

Before joining Muna, Maria worked to identify translational biomarkers for neuroinflammation across CNS disorders supporting preclinical and clinical programs at Lundbeck.

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Wei-Ting Chen, PhD

Head of Discovery Biology

Wei-Ting has more than 10 years of neuroscience and neurodegenerative disease experience in pathogenic mechanisms of Alzheimer’s disease.

Prior to joining Muna, she worked with Prof. Bart De Strooper at VIB/KU Leuven where she applied cutting edge spatial transcriptomic technology to study cell responses to disease pathology. This work provided a foundation for Muna’s MiND-MAP platform. MiND-MAP deploys multi-omic and bioinformatic analyses of cell transcriptomes from healthy and patient brain samples to identify novel pathways and targets that modulate resilience to the effects of misfolded protein pathology.

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Heleen Verlinden, PhD

Head of Operations, Leuven and Program Management

Heleen has more than 10 years of experience in R&D, drug discovery and clinical development in academia and the pharmaceutical industry.

Prior to joining Muna, she coordinated small molecule, biologics and antibody programs in oncology, infectious and autoimmune diseases at SGS Belgium and Aelin Therapeutics.

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Peter Flagstad, PhD

Program Head

Peter has more than 15 years of experience in leading clinical development programs for CNS disorders across all development stages.

Prior to joining Muna, he was a research scientist and program manager at Lundbeck, and clinical program lead at NMD Pharma. Peter holds a PhD in pharmaceutical medicine from the University of Copenhagen and an MBA with a concentration in project management from Henley Business School in the UK.

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Kim Andersen, PhD

Program Head

Kim has more than 30 years of experience in drug discovery and development and pharma leadership.

Prior to joining Muna, he was the Head of Research at Lundbeck and led their medicinal chemistry team there for many years, bringing small molecule and antibody drugs from the lab to patients. Kim holds a PhD in chemistry from the University of Copenhagen.