Naia Limited Appoints Three World-Class Business and Healthcare Thought Leaders to Its Business Advisory Board

GREENBRAE, Calif.--()--Naia Limited, an international drug development company with an initial portfolio of innovative, clinical stage compounds for short bowel syndrome, NASH and Type 2 diabetes, today announced three additions to its business advisory board. The new members are Edmund Pezalla, M.D., MPH, vice president and national medical director for pharmaceutical policy and strategy at Aetna, Hoyoung Huh, M.D., Ph.D., chairman of the board of directors of Geron Corporation and Cytomx Therapeutics, Inc., and Lord Edward (Tim) Razzall, Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE), partner at RT Associates, and leading member of the Liberal-Democratic Party (U.K.).

“We welcome Drs. Pezalla and Huh and Lord Razzall to our business advisory board”

The three new business advisory board members have joined existing members, Jorge Puente, M.D., chairman of Naia’s business advisory board, co-founder and managing partner at Pleasanton Pharma Ventures, and prior regional president, Asia Pacific and Canada, of Pfizer’s Oncology Business Unit, and Robert Williamson, CEO of PharmAkea and prior board member of Pharmasset. The company’s business advisory board plays a central role in Naia’s strategy and differentiation as its five board members are diverse, high-profile individuals whose expertise and backgrounds actively guide Naia’s strategy and operating philosophy.

“We welcome Drs. Pezalla and Huh and Lord Razzall to our business advisory board,” said Dr. Puente. “The fact that these distinguished individuals with differing domain experiences and insights decided to join our board, underscores the differentiation and appeal of Naia’s business model. Under the leadership of an experienced management team, Naia is quickly building a strong portfolio of exciting therapeutic products.”

H. Daniel Perez, M.D., co-founder, chairman and chief executive officer of Naia Limited, said, “These three business leaders share Naia’s objective of deploying an innovative and differentiated business model that addresses unmet medical needs in a capital-efficient manner. With their guidance and individual perspectives on global healthcare challenges and opportunities, Naia will accelerate the development of its innovative portfolio. We are committed to achieving our business objectives, growing our subsidiaries, expanding our partnerships and increasing value for our stakeholders.”

Naia’s diverse portfolio of therapeutics address regional and global unmet medical needs in various markets with an initial focus on rare and metabolic diseases. The company has in-licensing agreements with Amunix Operating Inc. for its GLP-1 and GLP-2 XTEN™ receptor agonist product candidates and a licensing agreement with Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles for a use patent for GLP-1.

Dr. Pezalla is a national and international public policy, public affairs and healthcare innovations leader with a unique understanding and perspective of patient, payer, health system provider and government needs. He is active in helping inform and shape systems and policy frameworks in the U.S. through his activities at The Brookings/Engelberg Center, as an invited expert on reform of drug approval regulations for the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) and as a planning board member for recommendations for the National Medical Device Surveillance System. He is currently vice president and national medical director for pharmaceutical policy and strategy at Aetna. He reports directly to the chief medical officer for the integration of pharmacy policy and activities into Aetna’s overall strategy and operations. Dr. Pezalla also serves as the lead clinical spokesperson for Aetna in pharmacy-related issues and represents Aetna on industry work groups and conferences. Previously, Dr. Pezalla was acting chief medical officer for Aetna’s operations in Doha, Qatar, where he managed the Qatari National Health Insurance scheme. He also served as chief clinical officer for Aetna Pharmacy Management. Prior to Aetna, he was vice president of clinical services for Prescription Solutions, a wholly-owned pharmacy benefits management subsidiary of United Health. Dr. Pezalla received his medical and undergraduate degrees from Georgetown University. He holds an MPH from the University of California at Berkeley.

Dr. Huh is a distinguished thought leader in the healthcare industry with extensive experience in international markets and inter-country business transactions. He is currently chairman of the board of Geron Corporation and Cytomx Therapeutics, as well as a director of ADDEX Pharmaceuticals and AntriaBio, Inc. Previously, he was chairman of the board of directors of BiPar Sciences, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sanofi-Aventis, and also served as its president and CEO. Additionally, Dr. Huh serves on the boards of directors of several privately-held companies. He held several senior positions at Nektar Therapeutics, including chief operating officer and senior vice president of business development and marketing. Prior to Nektar, Dr. Huh was a partner at McKinsey & Company where he was in the biotechnology and biopharmaceutical sectors. Prior to McKinsey, he was a physician and researcher at Cornell University Medical College and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. Dr. Huh holds an A.B. in biochemistry from Dartmouth College and an M.D. and a Ph.D. in genetics and cell biology from Cornell University Medical College and Sloan-Kettering Institute.

Lord Razzall, CBE, a solicitor in the U.K., has more than 35 years of corporate finance experience, particularly in multinational and cross border transactions. He is currently a partner at RT Associates, a business advisory firm for growth companies in a variety of industries including healthcare. He is also chairman of the payment systems provider Boxhill Technologies PLC and director of the finance company Just Loans PLC. Lord Razzall has had a long political career in the U.K. Currently, he is the co-chairman of the Parliamentary Committee for Treasury matters. Previously, he held the post of Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Trade and Industry/Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform. He was treasurer of the Liberal/Liberal Democratic Party after which he chaired the Liberal Democrats General Election Campaigns of 2001 and 2005. Earlier in his career, he served as partner and chief executive at Frere Cholmeley Bischcoff.

About Naia Limited

Naia Limited is employing a creative business model for global drug development that exploits untapped opportunities on a worldwide basis. This business model is designed to meet the needs of a complex healthcare ecosystem currently straining to contain costs while improving access to therapies. The company has an international base of operations to develop therapeutics better, faster and more inexpensively – in proximity to target markets. Naia’s operating structure includes a Cayman Island-based management company and several holding companies that focus on development activities of like assets. The company is developing a diverse portfolio of therapeutics that address regional and global unmet medical needs in various markets with an initial focus on rare and metabolic diseases. For more information, please visit


Naia Limited
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