Intensity Therapeutics

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Intensity Therapeutics, Inc. is a private, Connecticut-based company founded to develop therapeutics using its proprietary DfuseRx℠ platform. The Company’s platform technology can rapidly identify a tissue dispersion and cell penetrating anti-cancer formulation for a given tumor type. Intensity’s technology approach creates a product with sufficient potency to destroy a patient’s primary tumors and train the immune system to hunt and kill metastases.

In vivo (mouse) data generated indicates that Intensity’s products and methods can effectively kill cancer cells, cause the regression of large tumors to baseline, extend life, and immunize animals against tumor recurrence. Intensity’s lead product is being studied under a Collaborative Research and Development Agreement(CRADA) with the National Cancer Institute (NCI) branch of the National Institute of Health.

Intensity has initiated its first human clinical trial to study the effects of INT230-6 in solid tumors. IT-01 is entitled A Phase 1/2 Safety Study of Intratumorally Administered INT230-6 in Adult Subjects with Advanced Refractory Cancers. The trial aims to enroll approximately 60 patients with different types advanced solid tumor malignancies in a multicycle dosing regimen. The study will be conducted in multiple countries and includes a cohort combining INT230-6 with an anti-PD-1 antibody.


The most up-to-date information on Intensity Therapeutics can be found on its website,

Intensity Therapeutics Board of Directors and Senior Management

  • Lew Bender, MBA

    President and Chief Executive Officer

    Lewis H. Bender is the founder and currently President and CEO of Intensity Therapeutics, an in vivo stage specialty biotechnology company pioneering in situ vaccination, a new therapeutic approach to treat cancer. Prior to founding Intensity Therapeutics, from January 2008 until 2012 Mr. Bender was the CEO of Interleukin Genetics, a personalized medicine company. At Interleukin Mr. Bender successfully restructured the Company, increased sales eight fold, developed a new genetic-based testing platform and partnered with a large insurance provider to initiate studies leading to reimbursement of the Company’s lead product. Prior to joining Interleukin Genetics, Mr. Bender held numerous positions at Emisphere Technologies, Inc., a drug delivery company specializing in the oral delivery of poorly absorbed molecules. While at Emisphere from 1993 to December of 2007 Mr. Bender held positions as; Interim President & CEO, Chief Technology Officer, Senior Vice President of Business Development, and Vice President of Manufacturing and Process Development. During his career Mr. Bender has partnered with several major pharmaceutical and biotech companies using structures such as joint ventures, licensing and research collaboration agreements. Mr. Bender has over 23 years of biotech and pharmaceutical experience having led teams taking products from discovery to Phase III for compounds using novel drug delivery techniques. In addition, Mr. Bender has been successful in raising (or helping to raise) over $300 million in capital with institutional investors using several vehicles such as registered direct placements, PIPES, S-3 & S-1 filings, and convertible debt. Mr. Bender has a both a S.B. and S.M. in Chemical Engineering from MIT, an MBA from UPENN’s Wharton School, and an MA in International studies also from UPENN. He spent several years living in Switzerland and speaks French, German and Swiss-German dialect.

  • Emer Leahy, PhD


    Dr. Emer Leahy received her Ph.D. in Neuropharmacology from University College Dublin, Ireland, and her MBA from Columbia University. She is CEO of PsychoGenics Inc., a profitable preclinical CNS service company, CEO of PGI Drug Discovery LLC, a company engaged in psychiatric drug discovery with three partnered Phase II clinical programs and Adjunct Associate Professor of Neuroscience at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, Dr. Leahy has more than 25 years of experience in drug discovery, clinical develop and business development for pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, including extensive knowledge of technology assessment, licensing, mergers and acquisitions, and strategic planning. Prior to her appointment as CEO of PsychoGenics, she was Vice President of Business Development, a position she also held at American Biogenetic Sciences and at AMBI Inc. Dr. Leahy served on the Emerging Companies Section Governing Board for the Board of Directors of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), and currently serves on the Business Review Board for the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation and the Scientific Advisory Board of the International Rett Syndrome Foundation.

  • Declan Doogan, MD


    Dr. Doogan is a seasoned drug development executive and life sciences investor with more than 30 years’ experience in the global pharmaceutical industry in both major pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. He joined Pfizer in 1982, where he held a number of senior positions in R&D in the USA, UK and Japan, laterally as the Senior Vice President and Head of Worldwide Development. Since leaving Pfizer in 2007, Dr. Doogan has held executive roles in small pharmaceutical companies, including Amarin (AMRN: Nasdaq). Beyond his executive career, Dr. Doogan is an investor in emerging biotechnology companies, and is a partner at Mediqventures. He holds a number of Board appointments at pharmaceutical companies, including Biohaven Pharmaceuticals where he is a co-founder and Chairman. Dr. Doogan has also held professorships at Harvard School of Public Health, Glasgow University Medical School and Kitasato University (Tokyo). He received his medical degree from Glasgow University in 1975. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and the Faculty Pharmaceutical Medicine and holds a Doctorate of Science at the University of Kent in the UK.

    Emer Leahy, Ph.D

  • Ian B Walters, MD, MBA

    Chief Medical Officer
    Ian B. Walters, M.D., M.B.A., is the Entrepreneur in Residence at Mediqventures and is part-time CMO of Intensity Therapeutics, Inc. Over his 16 year career, he has demonstrated both leadership and expertise in drug development, including the advancement of multiple cancer compounds from research stages through approval.

    Ian specialises in the evaluation, prioritization, and the innovative development of new therapies for the treatment of severe diseases. He has worked at PDL BioPharma, Inc., Millenium Pharmaceuticals, Inc., and Sorrento Therapeutics, Inc., leading corporate development, translational medicine, clinical development and medical affairs.

    Ian spent seven years at Bristol-Myers Squibb, where he managed physicians overseeing the international development of more than eight oncology compounds (including Nivolimab (anti-PD-1), Ipilimumab (anti-CTLA-4), brivanib (anti VEGF/FGF), anti-IGF/IR, VEGFR2 biologic, Elotuzimab (antiCS1), as well as biomarker and companion diagnostic work. He was a core member of Bristol- Myers Squibb’s Strategic Transactions Group evaluating and executing licensing agreements, mergers and acquisitions, clinical collaborations, and the company’s immuno-oncology strategy.

    Before entering the private sector, Ian was a lead investigator at the Rockefeller University and initiated advanced immunology research to understand the mechanism of action of several compounds. Ian received his MD from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and an MBA from the Wharton School of The University of Pennsylvania.