Basel, Switzerland, January 11th, 2011: 4-Antibody AG, a leading Swiss antibody company, today announced the appointment of Robert F Burns, PhD as the Company’s new Chief Executive Officer.
Dr Burns has previously played leadership roles in the antibody field as CEO at Affitech A/S (NASDAQ OMX: AFFI), Copenhagen and, before that, as CEO at Celldex Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: CLDX) in the USA.
Prof Max Burger, 4-Antibody’s Chairman, said:
“It’s well known that we’ve been looking for the right CEO for some time. I’ve worked with Robert before and his achievements at both Affitech and Celldex were considerable. He’s a deal-maker and he has the experience to drive 4-Antibody forward to its next stage of growth – the achievement of additional multi-target collaborations with corporate pharma players to add to the partnership we put in place with Boehringer Ingelheim earlier this year.”
Dr Burns added: “4-Antibody is responding to a gap in the market today for providers of antibody technologies. The Company’s platform combines the speed and diversity of in vitro approaches to initial hit discovery with the discriminating power of in vivo approaches for selecting development leads which are more likely to produce ‘better-behaved’ antibodies in downstream development. This is a key need for many pharma partners today. Additionally, it is based on an all mammalian system and utilises full length IgG constructs, which removes the need for re-engineering at key downstream stages of the process.”
Dr Burns is an experienced biotech business executive. He joined 4-Antibody following the recent highly successful repositioning and refinancing of Copenhagen listed and Oslo-located Affitech A/S (AFFY, NASDAQ OMX). Prior to his time at Affitech, Robert was CEO at Celldex Therapeutics Inc. (CLDX, NASDAQ) during the critical period of Celldex’s emergence from Medarex through to its eventual reverse merger into NASDAQ-listed Avant Immunotherapeutics. Before his role at Celldex, Robert was Director of Technology Licensing at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research in New York, where he played leadership roles in the spin-out of several successful companies including Piramed in the UK. Prior to that he was Commercial Director at both Oxford Glycosciences, UK and British Biotech, UK; EVP Corporate Development AbT, Cambridge Mass; and General Manager of CIBA-Corning’s diagnostics business in Europe. Dr Burns is also non-executive Chairman of Haemostatix, an early stage UK company specialising in haemostasis blood clotting products.
About 4-Antibody AG
4-Antibody AG is a privately held Swiss Biotech company active in the area of both therapeutic antibody technology and antibody drug development. The company has developed a powerful, proprietary antibody discovery and engineering platform utilizing cellular fully human antibody libraries, incorporating the in vitro Retrocyte Display® technology and the in vivo Hu-PAC® technology. The first product to emerge into development from 4-Antibody is a fully human anti-cytomegalovirus therapeutic antibody for use clinically in transplantation applications. 4-Antibody AG owns several patent families related to therapeutic antibody discovery platforms and products, including more than a dozen granted patents worldwide. The company has 40 employees working at its two locations, in Basel, Switzerland, and in Jena, Germany.
Dr Robert Burns
t: +41 61 697 1351
Dr Douglas Pretsell
t: +44 20 7866 7868