Biotechnology Business

Leen Kawas Leads Propel With Vast Experience

As the CEO of Propel, Leen Kawas is committed to improving the lives of patients who suffer from rare diseases. Her vision for the company is focused on using the latest advances in biotechnology to develop new treatments that can address unmet medical needs. Here’s a closer look at her vision for Propel:

Patient-centered approach

Leen Kawas believes that patients should be at the center of everything that Propel does. She is committed to understanding the unique needs of patients and families as she sets priorities for company research and development.

Broad product portfolio

Kawas says that her vision for Propel is to provide researchers with a broad range of tools to address unmet medical needs. “We have a large continuum of tools,” she explains. Those products include precision gene editing tools, gene therapies, protein therapeutics, bioinformatics software, research services, and early-stage drug discovery capabilities.

Innovation building blocks

For Kawas, innovation is more than the pursuit of new scientific breakthroughs. “If you look at the pharmaceuticals industry, it’s all about drug discovery,” she says. “While we are focused on developing these breakthrough tools for our customers, we are also working on the downstream processing of raw data and development of platforms that support drug synthesis. We’re also working to develop new tools that support de novo drug design, because the vast majority of small molecules in our medicinal chemistry platform have yet to be discovered.”

Propel is committed to sharing its advances. Leen Kawas says that much of the company’s intellectual property has been filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. “We’ve invested heavily in this aspect of our business,” she explains, “and we are committed to doing so moving forward. We’re going to continue to build our IP portfolio.”

Leen Kawas says that Propel has invested significantly in the scientific and business development talent it hires. Part of that investment includes the company’s move early last year from its original headquarters in California to a new facility near Philadelphia. “We wanted a location that was more centrally located, and we found a great building that is big enough for where our team is today,” she says.