Cytovation appoints Iman Barilero as Chief Development Officer

Bergen, Norway, 21 March 2023 – Cytovation ASA, a clinical stage immune-oncology company focused on the development of its first-in-class targeted tumor membrane immunotherapy CyPep-1, announces that Dr. Iman Barilero has joined the company as Chief Development Officer. 

Dr. Barilero brings three decades of experience as a strategic executive in the global healthcare industry, successfully designing innovative and integrated patient-centric and value-based regulatory development pathways, in all phases of drug development and across all major global pharmaceutical markets. This effort has culminated in global market approval of several novel medicines in oncology and CNS disorders. She has held leadership roles in a number of biotech and big pharma companies, including Lundbeck, Johnson & Johnson, Roche, Sanofi and Bristol Myers Squibb. 

Dr. Barilero obtained her PhD in Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology from the University of Paris VI while working at the Cancer Research Unit of Institut Gustave Roussy, and she is currently a faculty member at the Tufts Center for Study of Drug Development, with a focus on regulatory sciences and evidence generation. 

Cytovation’s lead asset, CyPep-1, is a proprietary first-in-class targeted tumor membrane immunotherapy engineered to selectively target cancer cells and is currently in Phase 1/2 clinical trials. 

Lars Prestegarden, MD, PhD, CEO of Cytovation, commented: “We’re delighted to have someone with Iman’s wealth of experience join Cytovation as we progress CyPep-1 through clinical development. Iman has worked across Big Pharma and biotech, and her support will be invaluable as the company enters its important next stages of development and growth.” 

Iman Barilero, PharmD, PhD, Cytovation’s Chief Development Officer, added: “CyPep-1 represents an exciting new approach to cancer immunotherapy, and it’s great to be joining Cytovation at a time when the asset has such strong clinical momentum backed by promising early data. I look forward to working with the team on advancing CyPep-1 closer to marketing authorization and commercialization.” 

CyPep-1 eliminates cancer cells by targeting the plasma membrane, forming pores that release cancer specific antigens to the immune system, promoting an inflammatory microenvironment, and inducing a systemic, tumor-specific immune response. A synthetic peptide, CyPep-1 has been designed for easy and scalable manufacturing and is highly stable – an uncommon feature in these molecules. 

Phase 2 expansion studies will investigate CyPep-1 both as a monotherapy and in combination with the immune checkpoint inhibitor KEYTRUDA® (pembrolizumab). A number of these indications are orphan indications with few available treatments, which could allow for accelerated approval. 

KEYTRUDA® is a registered trademark of Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., a subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, NJ, USA. 

About Cytovation 

Cytovation ASA is a privately held, clinical stage immune-oncology company focused on the development of CyPep-1, a first-in-class immunotherapy targeting the cell membrane of tumor cells. The company is a spin-off from the University of Bergen (Norway), the city where it is headquartered. For more information, please visit 

Contact Information 


Federico Grego, Chief Operating Officer: 

MEDiSTRAVA Consulting 

Frazer Hall / Mark Swallow / George Underwood: 

Tel: +44 (0)20 3928 6900