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Valerie Cullen, PhD

Valerie Cullen, PhD

Head of Research and Translational Science

Dr. Valerie Cullen is an executive scientific leader with broad experience across drug discovery, pre-clinical pharmacology, translational strategies and clinical development.

Dr. Cullen has been SVP and Head of Research and Translational Science at Lysoway Therapeutics since May, 2024 where she leads Lysoway’s innovative programs across multiple therapeutic indications.

In her prior role as SVP of Research at Expansion Therapeutics, Dr. Cullen contributed to the development of RNA-targeted small molecules for neurological and neuromuscular diseases and was responsible for growing and leading the research organization. She helped the company raise over $80M in venture capital funding and was deeply involved in developing the company’s clinical and business strategies.

Prior to that, she served as Vice President, Translation and Development at Generian Pharmaceuticals, Inc, leading its pharmacology, biomarker and clinical activities across multiple disease areas. Previously, at Lysosomal Therapeutics, Inc. Dr. Cullen was Vice President, Program and Alliance Management and Senior Director, Translational Medicine. She acted as Program Lead for a novel GCase activator and oversaw its transition from preclinical to clinical testing for Parkinson’s Disease. While at LTI, Dr. Cullen also acted as Alliance Manager for the company’s pharma partnership (>$150M in upfront and research support) and was deeply involved in regulatory and clinical activities.

Dr. Cullen previously held roles of increasing responsibility in NeuroPhage Pharmaceuticals, Aldeyra Therapeutics and Link Medicine, leading target validation efforts, preclinical efficacy studies, biomarker development and clinical translation across a number of indications including Alzheimer’s Disease, Amyloidosis and Sjogren-Larsson Syndrome, all of which reached clinical-stage testing.  Over the course of her career, Dr Cullen has managed multiple internal teams and external collaborations across the U.S., Europe, Israel, Asia and Australia.

Dr. Cullen is an expert in lysosomal biology as it pertains to neurodegeneration and neurodevelopment and has additional experience in multiple areas including pulmonary biology, cardiometabolic syndromes, lipid disorders and inflammatory disease, amongst others.

Her work has won various accolades including the Annals of Neurology Clinical Impact Award and she has been granted numerous patents worldwide for innovative therapies for neurological diseases.

Dr. Cullen earned a PhD and BSc (Hons) in pharmacology from the University of Dublin, Ireland and held postdoctoral fellowships at the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London and at the Center for Neurologic Diseases, Harvard Medical School.