Monument Therapeutics, a stratified medicine company, has announced the appointment of Dr Julian Gilbert to its Board as a Non-Executive Director. Monument recently raised £2.625 million in seed funding and applies a novel drug development strategy, leveraging digital assessments of cognition to match patients with new pharmaceutical treatments. The company has a pipeline of promising drug development programmes, with the most advanced two being for cognitive impairment in schizophrenia and post-operative cognitive dysfunction.
Dr Gilbert brings deep expertise in the development and commercialising of repurposed and reprofiled compounds. He was co-founder and CEO of Acacia Pharma Group plc, a hospital pharmaceuticals company which launched its lead product BARHEMSYS®, a repurposed amisulpiride
formulation for the management of post-operative nausea and vomiting, in 2020. During his time at Acacia, Julian helped raise approximately £100 million in private and public funding and led its flotation on Euronext in 2018. Prior to this, Julian was co-founder and Commercial Director of Arakis
Limited, a specialist pharmaceutical repurposing company that was sold to Sosei in 2005 for £107 million, having licensed Seebri®/Ultibro® to Novartis. In his more than 30 years of commercial and technical experience in the pharmaceutical industry, Julian has also worked at Chiroscience Plc,
Mundipharma International Limited, BTG and GSK. He is Non-Executive Director of Exvastat and Nuformix plc and holds a degree in pharmacy and a PhD in pharmaceutics from the University of Nottingham.
Dr Gilbert commented: “I have no doubt that Monument’s unique approach to neuroscience drug development will prove successful at better matching patients with appropriate therapies. I look forward to working with the Monument team as we begin this exciting new stage of company development.”
Monument Chairman Dr Mark Treherne added: “I’m delighted to welcome Julian to Monument’s Board, where his commercial and strategic insights will further strengthen our ability to rapidly develop new treatments based on existing, safe drugs. Repurposing small molecules to treat psychiatric and neurological is an area with huge potential, but few people have Julian’s experience in successfully building companies around this approach.”
Monument’s initial targets are both areas of unmet clinical need with limited treatment options. Schizophrenia affects around 20 million people worldwide 1 , however there are no approved treatments for the common and disabling cognitive impairment associated with the disorder.
POCD is a condition arising from major surgery, which can result in cognitive impairment for patients over the age of 65 both immediately (50-80% at discharge 2 ) and persistently (10-30% six months post-surgery ,3 ). Almost 250 million major surgical procedures are performed globally every year 4 but there is no dedicated treatment for POCD.
In both approaches, Monument Therapeutics is de-risking development by repurposing drugs with a favourable safety profile and proven mechanisms of action, and combining these with proprietary cognitive stratification tools licensed from Cambridge Cognition Holdings plc (LON:COG).