Paul Peter Tak received his medical degree cum laude from the Amsterdam University Medical Center (AUMC) and was trained as an internist, rheumatologist and immunologist at Leiden University Medical Center, where he also received his PhD. He has worked as a scientist at the University of California San Diego. Next, he served as Professor of Medicine and founding Chair of the Department of Clinical Immunology and Rheumatology at the AUMC. His scientific work includes pioneering work on the cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway (inflammatory reflex) in models of chronic inflammation and he led the first clinical trial of vagus nerve stimulation in rheumatoid arthritis. This work has provided a platform from which to explore bioelectronics as a therapeutic approach in autoimmune disease.
He has published extensively in peer-reviewed journals (~600 publications, H-index 142, ranked #120 in the 2023 Edition of the World Ranking of Top 1000 Scientists in the area of Immunology), and served on numerous editorial boards, including as Co-Editor of Arthritis & Rheumatism. He received the Medal of Honour from the Netherlands Society for Rheumatology, was elected ‘Toparts Reumatologie’ (Elected by peers as ‘Best Rheumatologist’ in the Netherlands based on his clinical work making innovative therapies accessible to patients), was awarded Honorary Membership by EULAR and has been elected Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences in the U.K. He is a 2021 PharmaVOICE100 honoree (100 most inspiring people in life sciences) and included in ‘The Medicine Maker Power List 2023’ (30 influential and inspirational leaders across small molecule, biopharmaceutical, and cell and gene therapy development and manufacture).
At GlaxoSmithKline he served as Senior Vice President, Chief Immunology Officer, and Global Development Leader. He oversaw the creation of a portfolio of new medicines, including anti-CCL17 antibody, gepotidacin, belimumab sc (approved in 2017 [Benlysta® sc]), mafodotin (approved in 2020 [Blenrep®]), cabotegravir/rilpivirine (approved in 2021 [Cabenuva®]), and tapinarof (acquired by Dermavant Sciences; approved in 2022 [VTAMAR®]). He was the Chair of the Scientific Review Board, the governing body accountable for the scientific assessment of GSK’s R&D portfolio.
He has served as President and CEO of Tempero Pharmaceuticals (acquired by GSK), President and CEO of Kintai Therapeutics (merged with Senda Biosciences), Board Member of Galvani Bioelectronics, ViiV Healthcare, Sitryx Therapeutics (co-founder), Kintai Therapeutics, Omega Therapeutics, and Levicept. He is currently President & CEO of Candel.