atai Life Sciences has appointed Rolando Guiterrez-Esteinou as its Chief Medical Officer and Greg Weaver as the Chief Financial Officer.

atai enhancing its leadership with CFO and CMO appointment

Guiterrez-Esteinou is an experienced pharmaceutical executive in the development and commercialization of neuroscience drugs. He has been a psychiatrist for over 30 years and was involved in the breakthroughs of atypical antipsychotics and serotonin selective reuptake inhibitors. He has held top management positions in leading pharmaceutical companies.

Weaver brings extensive finance experience to atai having held various executive positions in the biotechnology industry. During his career, Weaver has guided more than $1.1 billion in financing transactions, taken part in many private and public financings, and provide strategic and financial guidance.

Florian Brand, atai’s CEO, stated that Weaver is a significant addition to the company owing to his vast financial experience and proven track record for successfully leading public offerings. Brand said that as atai continues to evolve and grow, Weaver’s vast financial knowledge and expertise will be vital.

Also commenting on Guiterrez-Esteinou’s appointment, the company’s Chief Scientific Officer, Dr. Srinivas Rao said that Rolando’s experience and understanding of compounds in neuroscience will be valuable at atai. He added that his experience and knowledge in CNS drug development will be vital to atai in moving its portfolio forward.

Dr. Rao explains the science behind psychedelic treatments

Recently Dr. Rao took part in the 2019 Mapping the Mind conference held in Toronto alongside other psychedelic medicine leaders. The annual event has been designed to educate and create public awareness regarding psychedelic and also enhance psychedelic research initiatives.Rao acknowledged the epidemiology behind the current mental health epidemic and the limitation of available treatments. He suggested that considering the scale of the problem it is therefore important to come up with alternatives to existing treatments with a focus on how to deliver the new therapies to individuals facing depression.

Dr. Rao also highlighted the encouraging science behind atai’s compound portfolio ranging from arketmine to psilocybin to anxiolytic GRX-917. He said that delivering psychedelic treatments requires massive investments, especially on clinical and reimbursement models.

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