MONTREAL--(Marketwire - March 05, 2008) - TOPIGEN Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company specialized in developing products for respiratory disorders, today announced that Paul K. Wotton, Ph.D., has resigned from his role as President, Chief Executive Officer and Director, and Patricia A. Lamothe has resigned from her role as Chief Financial Officer. Both executives have left their positions at TOPIGEN to pursue other opportunities.
Gary Lessing, Chairman of the Board of Directors, commented, "The Board is thankful to Paul and Patricia for their many contributions to TOPIGEN over the past few years and I wish them future success in their next endeavors. Today, the company is well positioned with two novel respiratory compounds in Phase 2 clinical development."
Mark Parry-Billings, Ph.D., Chief Development Officer, and Lisa Nolan, Ph.D., Senior Vice President, Business Development, remain in their leadership roles and will work closely with TOPIGEN's Board of Directors to continue to advance development efforts of the company's portfolio of respiratory products. The Board has initiated a search for a new Chief Executive to lead the company through late-stage clinical development. Barbara Van Oye, CPA, TOPIGEN's Director of Finance, will continue to manage the company's financial operations.
Charles Fong, Ph.D., Director, Venture Capital, BDC, commented, "With a C$28 million (US$27 million) Series C financing completed in July and November 2007, the entire investor group remains committed to bringing TOPIGEN's two lead respiratory assets through late-stage clinical trials. We look forward to working with the current management and a new CEO to bring TOPIGEN to its next inflection point."
The Board of Directors is comprised of Gary Lessing, Chairman. He is currently Chief Executive Officer of the biotech company, Arginetix. Directors include Charles Fong, Director, Venture Capital, Business Development Bank of Canada; Monique Laliberté, Investment Manager, Funds, Caisse de dépôt et Placement du Québec; Serge Langford, Managing Partner, Life Sciences, Multiple Capital; Gérald St-Aubin, Vice President, Business Development, Desjardins Capital de risque; and Mario Thomas, Vice President, T2C2/BIO 2000.
Lead Products, Clinical and Publications Update
TOPIGEN is actively progressing two drug candidates in Phase 2 trials, including TPI 1020, a novel anti-inflammatory compound for COPD, and TPI ASM8 for the treatment of moderate to severe asthma. TPI ASM8 utilizes the company's proprietary mRNA-silencing technology. These drug candidates target multiple pathways and pro-inflammatory mediators involved in chronic pulmonary diseases.
TPI 1020 is a novel anti-inflammatory drug candidate specifically targeted at inflammatory airways diseases, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). A multi-center Phase 2 study to compare the safety and efficacy of TPI 1020 versus budesonide (a marketed inhaled steroid) is currently recruiting patients in nine Canadian clinical centers. TOPIGEN has submitted results from a recently completed Phase 2 trial of TPI 1020 for peer review publication (pending).
TPI ASM8 is in development for the treatment of moderate and severe asthma. TOPIGEN recently announced the initiation of patient dosing in clinical protocol TPI ASM8-205, a Phase 2 safety and efficacy study in asthma with TPI ASM8. This study is currently enrolling patients at leading clinical research centers across Europe, including the UK, Netherlands and Italy.
Results of the first Phase 2a clinical trial of TPI ASM8 have recently been published in the online version of American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine article titled, Antisense Therapy against CCR3 and the Common Beta Chain Attenuates Allergen-Induced Responses. The print version will be available in the next few weeks. The publication can be viewed online by the following link: http://ajrccm.atsjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/200708-1251OCv1.
TOPIGEN also plans to present papers at the forthcoming American Thoracic Society Conference (May 2008), where the company will report progress with its preclinical product pipeline.
TOPIGEN is a privately-held, clinical-stage company focused on developing new classes of inhaled drugs for respiratory diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and asthma.
Current venture investors include NovaQuest, MMV Financial, Inc., BDC Venture Capital, Fonds de solidarite FTQ, Desjardins Venture Capital, Caisse de Dépot et Placement du Québec (Caisse), T2C2/BIO 2000 and Lothian Partners 27 (sarl) SICAR. For more detailed information on TOPIGEN visit www.topigen.com.
(978) 745-4200 X103
(978) 745-4200 X102