Yong Ben, M.D. Joins NKGen Biotech as Scientific and Clinical Advisor

SANTA ANA, Calif., August 3, 2022 — NKGen Biotech, a biotechnology company harnessing the power of the body’s immune system through the development of Natural Killer (NK) cell therapies, today announced that Yong Ben, M.D. has joined the company as a scientific and clinical advisor providing expertise to the company to accelerate the progress of its natural killer cell therapy (SNK) program as a potential treatment for solid tumors and neurodegenerative disorders.

Dr. Ben has over two decades of deep and diverse clinical development expertise including strategic planning, oncology clinical trial design and execution (phase I-IV), and successful BLA/NDA submissions. Under his leadership and direction, several oncology drug candidates were approved including a PD-1 antibody for over seven tumor types, a PARP inhibitor for ovarian cancer, a PD-L1 antibody for urothelial cancer, a proteasome inhibitor for multiple myeloma, a tyrosine kinase inhibitor for renal cancer, and oncolytic virus for head and neck cancers.

“We are excited to have Dr. Ben join us as a scientific and clinical advisor given his extensive experience in leading successful clinical development programs in the oncology and hematology space,” commented Sangwoo Park, Chairman and CEO of NKGen Biotech,” We look forward to Dr. Ben’s guidance in developing a robust clinical strategy to further advance our SNK clinical programs with the intent to offer a therapy that provides real improvements in therapeutics outcomes for cancer patients.”

Until recently, Dr. Ben served as CMO, Solid Tumors, for BeiGene, a global biotechnology company and previously CMO at BioAtla, a San Diego immunotherapy company. Prior, Dr. Ben was the Global Clinical Lead, Immuno-Oncology at AstraZeneca, leading the approval of durvalumab. Prior to AstraZeneca, Dr. Ben led multiple oncology programs including ixazomib pivotal program that led to an approval in multiple myeloma as well as orteronel and alisertib programs at Millennium Pharmaceuticals, and axitinib which was approved in renal cell carcinoma at Pfizer.

Dr. Ben received his medical degree from Norman Bethune College of Medicine and was a surgical oncologist at Peking Union Medical College Hospital with a post-doc fellowship at California Pacific Medical Center. Dr. Ben earned an MBA from the University of California, San Diego.


About NKGen Biotech

NKGen Biotech, Inc. is a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on the development and commercialization of innovative autologous, allogeneic, and CAR-NK Natural Killer (NK) cell therapeutics. Leveraging our proprietary cell expansion and activation technology and cutting-edge cell manufacturing expertise, we have the ability to infinitely expand natural killer cells while significantly enhancing cytotoxicity across our peripheral blood-derived products. NKGen Biotech’s lead product candidate, SNK01, is currently in clinical trials for the treatment of advanced refractory solid tumors both as a monotherapy and in combination with other agents, including checkpoint inhibitors and cell engagers. NKGen Biotech is committed to the vision of executing on our clinical strategies with the goal of commercializing our NK cell therapies to help save and sustain patients’ lives worldwide. The company and its commercially licensed cGMP facility are headquartered in Santa Ana, California, USA. For more information, please visit www.nkgenbiotech.com.


Denise Chua, MBA, CLS, MT (ASCP)
Vice President, Investor Relations and Corporate Communications