NextRNA Tx

Leading the next revolution of RNA-directed therapeutics

NextRNA is transforming the non-coding RNA therapeutic space and is shifting the concept of undruggable into druggable

NextRNA is a team of highly creative and talented individuals, determined to tackle a new class of promising and undervalued targets, non-coding RNAs “ncRNAs”. Our innovative discovery platform identifies and modulates the RNA binding protein responsible for the disease function of a ncRNA.

NextRNA’s founders are global leaders in the fields of ncRNA, drug delivery and cancer therapies. NextRNA’s leadership team is composed of accomplished drug developers with decades of industry experience, deep scientific knowledge and passion for innovation.

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The NextRNA Team

Matthew Jones
Sr. Director/Head Technology Platform
Julia A Novina, Esq.
Co-founder and CLO
Dominique Verhelle, PhD, MBA
Co-founder, CSO
Leon Wert Lamas, PhD
Co-Founder, Scientist II
Marc Cohen
Co-founder, Executive Chairman and CEO
Lorena Pantano, PhD
Associate Director/Head of Computational Biology
Nilesh Amatya, PhD
Scientist II
Young-Jin Cho, PhD
Director/Head of Structural Biology
Catherine Lin
Research Associate II
Cathy Folster
Sr. Office and Operations Manager
Lalit K. Sharma, PhD
Associate Director Chemistry
Mark Demma, MPhil, PhD
Senior Scientist
Marc Hoemberger, PhD
Scientist II, Biochemistry

NextRNA Leadership

Marc Cohen
Co-founder, Executive Chairman and CEO
Dominique Verhelle, PhD, MBA
Co-founder, CSO
Julia A Novina, Esq.
Co-founder and CLO

NextRNA Founders

Carl Novina, MD, PhD
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Marc Cohen
Cobro Ventures, NextRNA Therapeutics
Leon Wert-Lamas, PhD, DVM
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Dominique Verhelle, PhD, MBA
NextRNA Therapeutics
Kenneth Anderson, MD
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School
Robert Langer, PhD
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Barry Polisky, PhD
Julia Novina, Esq.
David Hill, PhD
Nikhil Munshi, MD
Fred Mermelstein, PhD
Sabine Studer, PhD
Steven Neier, PhD
Robert Distel, PhD

NextRNA Board Members & Advisors

Marc Cohen, Executive Chairman
Kenneth Anderson, MD
Andrea Armstrong
Arthur Becker
Alain Cohen
Drew Dennison
Christine Henderson
Susan Langer
Fred Mermelstein, PhD
Carl Novina, MD, PhD
Barry Polisky, PhD
Elena Prokupets
Malcolm Salter
Dominique Verhelle, PhD, MBA

Our Science

Historically, RNA has been thought of as a messenger whose role is to translate information from DNA (the blueprint of a cell) and make proteins (which carry out the activities of a cell). There are many RNAs that do not make proteins, called “non-coding RNAs (ncRNA)”.

These ncRNAs are able to regulate essential processes and when altered cause disease. RNAs are more than merely messengers, but therapeutic targets with vast opportunities to improve outcomes for many diseases. NextRNA has developed an integrated drug discovery pipeline to identify and discover drugs for disease-causing ncRNAs.

For many non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs), their function depends on direct interactions with proteins. As a result, the fundamental biology and disease relevance of most ncRNAs can only be fully understood by defining their associated proteins. Traditional methods to define RNA-protein interactions were historically ineffective. NextRNA has developed and optimized a high-throughput screening platform to discover RNA-protein interactions and screen for molecules that disrupt these disease-relevant interactions. This platform is a key element in an integrated drug discovery pipeline that combines informatic tools, traditional methods, and novel approaches to develop transformative RNA-directed therapies.

NextRNA’s team is channeling its unique capabilities
to develop innovative therapies for challenging diseases

We are trailblazers unlocking a new class of therapeutics targets with the discovery of novel ncRNAs responsible for disease

We are accelerating the development of therapeutics by specifically identifying the protein responsible for the ncRNA function

We are improving safety and effectiveness by designing drugs that selectively disrupt the disease related ncRNA-protein interaction


Therapeutics Together



Join our team of talented and driven people inspired to make a difference in patients’ lives.

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