MONTREAL, Feb. 21 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ - Celmed BioSciences Inc. today announced the retirement of Andre de Villers, MD, President and Chief Executive Officer, and the appointment of Mark Kaufmann, formerly Chief Operating Officer and Vice President Corporate Development, to the position of President and Chief Executive Officer. Dr. de Villers will remain on Celmed's Board of Directors. The changes are effective February 21, 2006.
"I would like to offer my sincere gratitude to Dr. de Villers for his efforts during the past three years," said Roger Headrick, Chairman of Celmed. "Three years ago, Dr. de Villers was asked by the Board to come out of retirement to join Celmed on an interim basis to help turn around the Company. During this time, Dr. de Villers has overseen Celmed's significant clinical progress, the spin off of a division, the acquisition of a San Diego oncology company and the successful negotiation of the consolidation of the Company's shareholder base to support the new strategy of the Company. In addition, Dr. de Villers developed Celmed's high-quality management team that includes Mr. Kaufmann." Mr. Headrick continues, "We believe that Mr. Kaufmann's track record is a testament to his ability to continue the momentum that Dr. de Villers has begun by solidifying Celmed's financial position, leading the execution of the current clinical programs and building the business going forward."
"We wish Dr. de Villers the very best in all of his future endeavors," added Mr. Headrick.
Mark Kaufmann has nearly 20 years of experience in the biopharmaceutical industry in both the U.S. and Canada. Since joining Celmed, Mr. Kaufmann has been responsible for the operations and corporate development of the Company including the management of the teams responsible for the progress of Celmed's products into human clinical testing. Mr. Kaufmann was instrumental in the development of a new business plan for Celmed, the successful launch of three new clinical programs and its merger with NewBiotics Inc. Prior to joining Celmed, Mr. Kaufmann was Vice-President Corporate Development at Nexia Biotechnologies Inc. in Montreal where he was responsible for building Nexia's biopharmaceutical business, including product development and licensing agreements. He was previously Chief Financial Officer of Conceptis Technologies Inc., a medical media and education company, and, prior to that, Mr. Kaufmann worked for five years with MedImmune, Inc, located in Maryland, as Director of Planning and Analysis where he led the strategic planning and contributed to the development of MedImmune's commercialization strategy. Mr. Kaufmann holds an MBA from the University of Michigan School of Business and a BA in Biochemical Sciences from Harvard University.
About Celmed BioSciences Inc.
Celmed BioSciences Inc. is a private biopharmaceutical company based in Montreal that is developing products in the field of cancer and immunology. Celmed currently has two programs in clinical development. Its lead program, NB1011, is a proprietary small molecule that is converted into a potent drug within tumors by thymidylate synthase (TS), an enzyme that is present at high levels in many tumors. NB1011 is currently being evaluated in a new Phase I/II clinical trial in patients that have high-TS solid tumors that are refractory to standard chemotherapies. Celmed's second program, Theralux(TM), involves a proprietary small molecule drug, TH9402, that is selectively retained in certain cells and which can be sensitized by visible light to kill those cells. Theralux(TM) comprises several different clinical programs, including Theralux(TM)-ECP, a program to treat autoimmune diseases refractory to standard therapies through the process of extracorporeal photochemotherapy (ECP) and Theralux(TM)-GvHD, a program for leukemia and lymphoma patients to facilitate mismatched blood stem cell transplants by providing patients with donor T cells necessary to fight infections pretreated with Theralux(TM) to reduce their ability to cause graft-versus-host disease (GvHD) without reducing their ability to fight infections and the leukemia. Theralux(TM)-NHL, a program to purge contaminated cancer cells from autologous stem cell grafts, is nearing completion of its open-label clinical study. Celmed is located in Ville Saint-Laurent just outside of Montreal, Quebec, Canada. More information about Celmed can be found at www.celmedbio.com.
CELMED BIOSCIENCES INC.