Interview with ProQR's Chief Corporate Development Officer Catching up with returning ProQRian René Beukema

In this personal interview, we speak to ProQR’s Chief Corporate Development Officer & General Counsel, René Beukema on his return to ProQR.

Rene Beukema smiling and looking up from his work

What attracted you to come back to ProQR? What impact are you hoping to make?

“I am extremely passionate about ProQR’s focus on developing RNA technologies that allow us to develop potentially life-changing medicines for patients with high unmet medical needs and believe I can make meaningful contributions helping the company execute against its strategy of accelerating our next-generation RNA-base editing platform technology, Axiomer®. I am in the unique position of bringing experiences from my previous role at ProQR, including an extensive understanding of the Company’s purpose and culture, as well as those gained through other M&A, capital markets, and corporate development roles to help us advance to the next stage of our evolution.”

In your opinion, how has ProQR changed since you were last part of the company?

“ProQR’s experiences over the last few years have enabled us to hone our strengths and refine our strategy to have an impact for as many patients as possible. By focusing our efforts and establishing strategic partnerships like we did with Lilly, ProQR is in new phase that prioritizes our Axiomer® RNA-base editing technology.”

I look forward to the day when the potential of Axiomer® is realized and we are bringing transformative medicines to patients in need.

René Beukema

What are the short and long-term goals you are looking to accomplish with your team?

“In the near term, I want to help our team bring in the next phase of ProQR’s journey by accelerating the growth our Axiomer® platform. This includes communicating our vision and plans for Axiomer® to both internal and external stakeholders. Importantly, we are also focused on seeking a strategic partner for our ophthalmology assets, who can take these programs forward. Over the long term, I want to see our RNA platform playing a key role in the development of therapeutics for patients suffering from diseases with high unmet need.”

How do you distinguish ProQR from other RNA therapy companies?

“ProQR is pioneering a next-generation RNA technology called Axiomer®, which could potentially yield a new class of medicines. Our proprietary Axiomer® RNA-editing technology enables your body to treat disease, by using editing oligonucleotides to attract ADAR (Adenosine Deaminase Acting on RNA) at a specific location in an RNA to make an edit. At ProQR, our deep commitment to these types of advancements is what sets us apart. The offices at our headquarters in Leiden (Netherlands) are centered around the laboratories where our scientists develop our novel RNA therapies, putting science, literally, at the heart of what we do.”

For you personally, what are your greatest hopes for the business?

“I look forward to the day when the potential of Axiomer® is realized and we are bringing transformative medicines to patients in need. I am confident ProQR will be an industry leader in the years to come at the forefront of RNA-based medicines.”