MONTREAL--(MARKET WIRE)--Aug 14, 2008 -- TOPIGEN Pharmaceuticals Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company specialized in developing products for respiratory disorders, today announced that it has appointed Mark Parry-Billings, Ph.D., as Chief Executive Officer. Dr. Parry-Billings joined TOPIGEN in 2007 as Chief Development Officer and expanded his role to lead the company's operations in early 2008. Under his leadership, TOPIGEN's clinical product candidates, TPI ASM8 and TPI 1020, have advanced through Phase II clinical trials, and the company has met all of its current product development milestones. The company also announced that it has received C$11M (US$11M) ahead of schedule from its previously announced Series C venture financing round of C$26M (US$25M) in August 2007, which will provide further funding for these key product opportunities.
Gary Lessing, Chairman of the Board of Directors, commented, "With Mark's extensive knowledge of respiratory product development and strong industry experience, he is an obvious choice to lead TOPIGEN during its next phase of development. The Board looks forward to working effectively with management to take the company forward."
Mark Parry-Billings commented, "In joining TOPIGEN last year, I was attracted to the company's innovative approach to the management of respiratory diseases and also to the opportunity for the proprietary RNA-silencing technology. Today, TOPIGEN has transitioned effectively to an advanced clinical stage company with two lead product candidates in Phase II development and a third candidate that is Phase I ready. I look forward to further building TOPIGEN as a leader and innovator in respiratory therapeutics."
Previously, Dr. Parry-Billings was European Director and member of the Board of pSiMedica Ltd. (a subsidiary of pSivida), a global company developing targeted and controlled release products across a range of therapeutic areas. Prior to this, he was Director of Research & Development and Board member at Innovata Biomed Ltd., a respiratory product development company, and held R&D positions at Schering Healthcare Ltd. Dr. Parry-Billings has a Ph.D., and was a post-doctoral fellow in Biochemistry at the University of Oxford.
Mr. Lessing also commented, "With Mark's appointment as CEO, we will continue to build a strong executive leadership team with the ongoing selection of a Chief Financial Officer. In addition, Dr. Lisa Nolan will take on the role of Chief Business Officer to advance the company's licensing and business development activities and strategic planning."
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. TOPIGEN is actively progressing two drug candidates in Phase II trials for COPD and asthma, including TPI 1020, a novel anti-inflammatory which utilizes nitric oxide donation technology and TPI ASM8, based on its proprietary mRNA-silencing technology. These drug candidates target multiple pathways and pro-inflammatory mediators involved in chronic pulmonary diseases.
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.
Source: TOPIGEN Pharmaceuticals, Inc.