SAN DIEGO, Oct. 18, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Celladon Corporation, a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on developing novel therapies by applying its leadership position in the field of SERCA enzymes, today announced that it has appointed Michael Narachi as Chairman of the Board of Directors.
Michael currently serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of Orexigen Therapeutics, Inc. Michael has 29 years of biotechnology and pharmaceutical experience across a broad range of functions including clinical development, commercialization, strategic business development and planning. Prior to joining Orexigen, Michael served as Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President of Ren Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a private biotechnology company and Executive Chairman of the Board of Naryx Pharma, Inc., a private pharmaceutical company. In 2004, Narachi retired as an officer and Vice President and General Manager of Amgen's Anemia Business. Throughout his 20 years at Amgen, Michael held various positions including: Product Development Team Leader for NEUPOGEN; Director of Clinical Operations in Thousand Oaks, Calif., and Cambridge, U.K.; Vice President of Development and Representative Director for Amgen Japan; Head of Corporate Strategic Planning; Chief Operations Officer of Amgen BioPharma; and Vice President, Licensing and Business Development. He is also Chairman of AMAG Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and a member of the Board of Directors at the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) and the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA).
Krisztina Zsebo, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Celladon, said "Michael's appointment brings to the Board over two decades of broad experience in product development and commercial operations at preeminent biotechnology companies. We look forward to working with him in his new capacity as Chairman."
We are a clinical-stage biotechnology company applying our leadership position in the field of calcium dysregulation by targeting SERCA enzymes to develop novel therapies for diseases with tremendous unmet medical needs. Sarco/endoplasmic reticulum Ca2+-ATPase, or SERCA, enzymes are a family of enzymes that play an integral part in the regulation of intra-cellular calcium in all human cells. Calcium dysregulation is implicated in a number of important and complex medical conditions and diseases, such as heart failure, diabetes and neurodegenerative diseases. Our therapeutic portfolio for diseases characterized by SERCA enzyme deficiency includes both gene therapies and small molecule compounds. MYDICAR, our most advanced product candidate, uses gene therapy to target SERCA2a, which is an enzyme that becomes deficient in patients with heart failure. In a 39-patient randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled Phase 2a trial in patients with systolic heart failure, which we refer to as CUPID 1, MYDICAR was found to be safe and well-tolerated, reduced heart failure-related hospitalizations, improved patients' symptoms, quality of life and serum biomarkers, and improved key markers of cardiac function predictive of survival, such as end systolic volume. Based on these results, as well as our previous preclinical studies and clinical trials, we have advanced MYDICAR to a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled international Phase 2b trial in patients with systolic heart failure, which we refer to as CUPID 2. We expect to complete enrollment of CUPID 2 in the first half of 2014 and announce results from this trial in mid-2015.
SOURCE Celladon Corporation