30 Mar Harrison Named Woman To Watch
Darnisha Harrison is one of the ﬁrst African American women to be the founder, CEO and president of a pharmaceutical company. And just like her position, she has taken on a task few have dared to tackle. She wants to help eliminate a disease that aﬀects close to 400 million people annually. It’s a disease that puts 2.5 billion at risk, is a $1.8 billion economic burden and is the leading cause of death in the tropics and subtropics.
Despite the devastating numbers, dengue fever has been widely ignored for decades.
It’s only been in the last ﬁve to
six years that experts say various pharmaceutical companies have begun focusing on ways to prevent the disease. But Harrison through her pharmaceutical company, Ennaid Terapeutics, has been searching for a “right-now” cure for all four strains. And she believes she has found it.
“It’s a global issue and we have a
global solution,” said Harrison,
a former scientist with Amgen
and the University of Georgia. “Te diﬀerence is vaccines are prevention. We have a right-now solution. What we are doing will help actual victims right now. We have a today-cure that will help people who are aﬀected today.”
Her company, named after her mother (Dianne spelled backwards), was oﬃcially launched in September, but the preparation took close to a year. She has a team that includes a lawyer, advisor, scientists and business people.
“We are taking really good science in the early stages and creating a cure that can help people,” Harrison said. “We have a huge responsibility to really do everything in our power to get this cure developed and marketed.”
For that to happen, Harrison estimates that it will take about $20 to $30 million. And she is working non-stop to ﬁnd the funding.Read Article