SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., Feb. 6, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Five
Prime Therapeutics, Inc. (FivePrime), a leader in the discovery and
development of innovative biologics, announced today that it has
confirmed the appointment of Lewis T. "Rusty" Williams, MD, PhD, the
Founder of FivePrime, as President and Chief Executive Officer and
appointed Brian Atwood as Chairman of the Board. Dr. Williams has
functioned as FivePrime's President and Chief Executive Officer since
August 2011. Mr. Atwood has served as a member of the Board of
Directors of FivePrime since May 2002.
"I am delighted to have the opportunity to work more closely with Rusty
and the rest of the executive team in my new role as Chairman of the
Board," said Mr. Atwood. "I believe FivePrime has bright prospects with
an exciting and expanding pipeline of antibody and protein therapeutics
with an industry-leading discovery platform. The Board strongly
endorsed the confirmation of Rusty as FivePrime's CEO and we have great
confidence in Rusty's leadership and FivePrime's executive team."
"Brian has actively served on our Board and has a distinguished career
both operationally and as a leading venture capitalist," said Dr.
Williams. "I am very pleased that Brian has agreed to serve as our
Chairman of the Board. FivePrime will greatly benefit from his
contributions as we advance into the next phase of our pipeline
Dr. Williams founded FivePrime in 2002. Prior to founding FivePrime,
Dr. Williams was Chief Scientific Officer and a member of the Board of
Directors of Chiron Corporation and President of Chiron Technologies.
Prior to joining Chiron, Dr. Williams was a Howard Hughes Medical
Institute investigator at the University of California, San Francisco.
Earlier in his career he was on the faculty of Harvard Medical School
and was a staff cardiologist at the Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr.
Williams is a co-founder of COR Therapeutics, Inc., and served as a
member of its Board of Directors. He served on the Boards of Duke
University and Beckman Coulter Corporation and is currently on the
Board of the Berklee College of Music and Rice University.
Dr. Williams received his M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from Duke University
and trained in Internal Medicine and Cardiology at the Massachusetts
Mr. Atwood co-founded Versant Ventures, a leading healthcare-focused
venture capital firm, where he serves as a Managing Director. He also
has more than 15 years of operating experience in the biotechnology
industry. Prior to launching his career in venture capital, Mr. Atwood
was Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of Glycomed, a
publicly traded biotechnology company. Mr. Atwood also currently serves
as a Board member at the private companies Veracyte, Inc., OpGen, Inc.,
PhaseRx, Inc., Immune Design Corp. and Groove BioPharma Corp. (formerly
Mirina Corporation), as well as the public companies, Cadence
Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (CADX), Clovis Oncology, Inc. (CLVS) and Trius
Therapeutics, Inc. (TSRX).
Mr. Atwood received a BS in Biological Sciences from the University of
California, Irvine, an MS in Ecology from the University of California,
Davis, and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Five Prime Therapeutics, Inc. is a clinical-stage, privately held,
biotechnology company with a strong pipeline of antibodies and ligand
traps for cancer, autoimmunity and respiratory diseases. FivePrime has
differentiated discovery capabilities built on its comprehensive
library of secreted and extracellular human proteins, which it
leverages in cell-based assays, in vivo models and receptor-ligand
matching screens to identify medically relevant new targets and
therapeutic proteins. FivePrime has entered into a collaboration
agreement to develop and commercialize its lead product, FP-1039
(HGS1036), with Human Genome Sciences, Inc. in the United States,
Canada and the EU. FivePrime has also established significant
collaborations for the discovery of innovative biologics in specific
therapeutic areas with several leading pharmaceutical companies,
including Pfizer, Centocor and GlaxoSmithKline. For more information
about FivePrime, please visit FivePrime's web site at
The Five Prime Therapeutics, Inc. logo is available at
CONTACT: Amy Kendall, Corporate Communications