Jeff Wolf is in a race to kill cancers. Many kinds of cancers.

Wolf, CEO of Chapel Hill biopharmaceutical company Heat Biologics (Nasdaq: HTBX), took charge of a unique therapeutic discovery from a University of Miami scientist a few short years ago and ran with it.

He ran to the North Carolina Biotechnology Center to set up a temporary office until he could arrange the rental contract for his company’s current Chapel Hill digs.

He convinced NCBiotech to give Heat Bio a $250,000 Strategic Growth Loan in January 2012, to propel the company’s proprietary ImPACT Therapy, then repaid it well ahead of schedule as other funding poured in. He scoured the investment world, including a trip with fellow North Carolina entrepreneurs in an NCBiotech-sponsored Venture Fly-In to the San Francisco Bay area to present to investors.

Then, in July 2013, Wolf flew to New York to ring the NASDAQ closing bell and celebrate the company’s successful $25 million initial public offering.

And this week he continued the company’s blazing pace by not only filing Heat Bio’s second investigational new drug (IND) application with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, but concurrently announcing the addition of an expert to handle Heat’s increasing frenzy of clinical and regulatory affairs.

The most recent IND is for HS-410, targeting bladder cancer. Heat’s lead compound, HS-110, will soon be entering Phase 2 trials against non-small cell lung cancer.

ImPACT Therapy is designed to deliver live, genetically modified, irradiated human cells which are reprogrammed to pump out a broad spectrum of substances toxic to cancer cells. ImPACT is a one-two punch that also includes a potent immune-system booster called gp96, a protein found in all human cells which Heat expects will educate and activate cancer patients’ own immune systems to better recognize and kill cancerous cells.

Both therapies, and future cancer targets, will be shepherded by Melissa Price, Ph.D., Heat’s newly hired vice president of Clinical and Regulatory Affairs.

“Melissa’s oncology experience will serve us well as we continue to progress our two lead product candidates through clinical trials in non-small cell lung and bladder cancers,” said Wolf. “With the filing of the IND for our second product candidate, our clinical development activities are increasing and we are pleased to have Melissa spearheading the effort.”

Price came to Heat from contract research organization INC Research, where she was vice president of Global FSP Solutions. With a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from Yale University, she had also worked at Novaquest, a Raleigh-based Quintiles Company.

She began her drug development career at Attenuon in San Diego, an oncology-focused biotechnology company.

(C) NC Biotechnology Center