Appili Therapeutics Appoints Drug Development Executive Don Cilla to the Newly Created Position of Chief Development Officer

HALIFAX, Nova Scotia, October 29, 2020 – Appili Therapeutics Inc. (TSX: APLI; OTCQX: APLIF) (the “Company” or “Appili”), a biopharmaceutical company developing anti-infective drug candidates, today announced that it has recruited Don Cilla, PharmD, MBA, to serve as the Company’s new Chief Development Officer (CDO), effective November 1, 2020. In this role, Dr. Cilla will oversee the strategy and execution of the preclinical and clinical programs for Appili’s anti-infective pipeline. He will be responsible for advancing programs through clinical development, regulatory submission, and commercialization milestones. He brings to this role more than 30 years of experience in the drug development industry spanning large, midsize, and start-up companies, with extensive global clinical development and regulatory expertise.

“Our clinical programs have reached inflection points crucial to asset development and value creation, and Don’s vast clinical and regulatory experience is a strong fit with the needs of our novel pipeline, each of which has its own unique pathway and value drivers,”  said Dr. Armand Balboni, Chief Executive Officer, Appili Therapeutics. “His well-established track record developing a broad range of drug products in early and later phase development will be a tremendous asset to the Appili team. We welcome his insights and expertise as we work to drive our programs forward in order to address significant and severe unmet needs for patients facing life-threatening infections.”

Dr. Cilla’s career includes positions of increasing responsibility in drug product team leadership, program management, clinical pharmacology, clinical development, and administration in large pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and generic drug companies. He has held a broad range of development positions in a variety of companies, including Shire Pharmaceuticals (Takeda), MedImmune (AstraZeneca), and Otsuka America Pharmaceuticals. He also has served in multiple consulting roles, outsourcing his expertise to build and lead teams for biotechnology companies in need of deep drug development and functional area capabilities.

Dr. Cilla’s extensive experience includes eight marketing authorization applications for new products or line extensions, serving as a key team member for multiple U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory committee meetings, and contributing to 16 Investigational New Drug (IND) applications. He has been involved in more than 40 drug development programs across a wide range of therapeutic areas, including anti-infectives, of which 20 products were ultimately approved for commercialization. Dr. Cilla earned his Doctor of Pharmacy degree from the University of Michigan and an MBA from the University of Phoenix.

“There is a clear and urgent need for highly effective and novel infectious disease products to address the unmet medical needs resulting from more resistant and virulent infectious agents that society faces today. Appili has a unique approach to building out its pipeline into an exciting portfolio of programs. This includes a timely and highly focused COVID-19 program, which certainly has global implications, as well as its other assets – including the novel anti-fungal, next-generation antibiotic program, and a biodefense vaccine,” said Don Cilla, PharmD, MBA, Chief Development Officer of Appili Therapeutics. “The current pipeline is comprised of broad and exciting programs that truly reflect patient-focused needs, which will give Appili the opportunity to collaborate with key industry players in bringing these products to market. This approach is a strong fit with my experience in the biopharma industry, and I am thrilled to be a part of this team at such an exciting time for the Company.”


About Appili Therapeutics

Appili Therapeutics Inc. was founded to advance the global fight against infectious disease by matching clearly defined patient needs with drug development programs that provide solutions to existing challenges patients, doctors, and society face in this critical disease space. Appili has built a pipeline of assets designed to address a broad range of significant unmet medical needs in the infectious disease landscape. This diverse pipeline aims to address some of the most urgent threats in global public health, including ATI-2307, a novel, broad spectrum, clinical-stage antifungal candidate in development for severe and difficult-to-treat invasive fungal infections; ATI-1701, a vaccine candidate for tularemia, a very serious biological weapons threat; ATI-1503, a drug discovery program aimed at generating a novel class of antibiotics with broad-spectrum activity against Gram-negative superbugs; and ATI-1501, which employs Appili’s proprietary, taste-masked, oral-suspension technology with metronidazole for the growing number of patients with difficulty swallowing. In addition, the Company is also testing FFTC’s drug favipiravir for the prevention of COVID-19 as a potential prophylaxis treatment. Headquartered in Halifax, Nova Scotia, with offices in Toronto, Ontario, Appili is pursuing worldwide opportunities in collaboration with scientific and industry commercial partners, governments and government agencies. For more information, visit


Forward-Looking Statements

This news release contains “forward-looking statements”, including with respect to the effective date of the TSX listing and the TSXV delisting, which reflect the current expectations of the Company’s management future growth, results of operations, performance and business prospects and opportunities. Wherever possible, words such as “may,” “would,” “could,” “should,” “will,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “plan,” “expect,” “intend,” “estimate,” “potential for,” and similar expressions have been used to identify these forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve significant known and unknown risks, uncertainties and assumptions, including, without limitation, those listed in the annual information form of the Company dated June 24, 2020 and the other filings made by the Company with the Canadian securities regulatory authorities (which may be viewed at Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize or should assumptions underlying the forward-looking statements prove incorrect, actual results, performance or achievements may vary materially from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements contained in this news release. These factors should be considered carefully, and prospective investors should not place undue reliance on the forward-looking statements. The Company disclaims any intention or obligation to revise forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise, except as required by law.


Media Contact:
Andrea Cohen
Sam Brown Inc.
T: 917-209-7163


Investor Relations Contact:
Kimberly Stephens, CFO
Appili Therapeutics