Tom Hughes joined Zafgen in 2008 as chief executive officer. Throughout his career, Dr. Hughes has been involved in numerous drug discovery efforts in the metabolic and cardiovascular disease area, focusing on glucose homeostasis, lipid metabolism and the control of blood clotting. During his 20-year tenure at Novartis, Dr. Hughes most recently served as the vice president and global head of the cardiovascular and metabolism disease area. Prior to this position, he served as the the site head for research at Novartis’ research facility in Basel, Switzerland. He also served as global head of diabetes research at Novartis where he directed drug discovery research teams specializing in type 2 diabetes and metabolic disorders. From 1995 to 2001, Dr. Hughes led discovery efforts at Novartis that resulted in the validation of DPP-4 inhibition as a therapeutic approach to type 2 diabetes, as well as the identification and advancement of vildagliptin. In 2007, R&D Directions magazine named Dr. Hughes one of the 20 Most Notable People in R&D. Dr. Hughes earned his Ph.D. in Nutrition from Tufts University and received an M.S. in zoology from Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University. He graduated with a B.A. in biology from Franklin and Marshall College.