Dr. Fulga will remain associated with our Institute as a Visiting Professor of Genome Biology until October 2021 in the first instance. During this time, Dr. Fulga will continue ongoing collaborations and mentoring his graduate students.
The transition to Vertex Pharmaceuticals constitutes an exciting career move for Dr. Fulga, who will lead the gene editing and discovery research program at the new Vertex Genetic Therapies (VGT) site in the Boston area. The relationship with Vertex was initiated by an intriguing talk at a recent Keystone Symposia:
“Earlier in the year I listened to a talk by Dr. Leonela Amoasii, a former postdoc (currently Director of Research Gene Editing at VGT) of Prof. Eric Olson at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Centre and co-founder of Exonics Therapeutics (since acquired by Vertex Pharmaceuticals). Her talk described their fascinating work on using genome editing to restore dystrophin levels in the muscle of canine models of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, which was recently published in Science. This groundbreaking research and implicitly the potential of this technology in developing the first gene-editing based therapy for Duchenne were simply astonishing.”
This initial encounter was the starting point for extremely captivating discussions and a journey that culminated with Dr. Fulga’s new position at Vertex.
“For the past 8 years I had the unique opportunity to work with some of the most brilliant students, postdocs and colleagues, and I was surrounded by fantastic mentors and an extremely supportive environment. I have also been extremely fortunate to start my lab in Oxford at a time when genome editing became a game-changing platform for biomedical research. I believe that we are now on the verge of a historical moment in medicine and I look forward to joining the Vertex team and to dedicating my time to the development of transformative therapies for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and other devastating diseases.”
We wish Dr. Fulga all the best in his future endeavours and his upcoming move to Boston.