WORCESTER, Mass. Jan. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Hypnion, Inc., a pioneering neuroscience drug discovery company focused on sleep-wake neurobiology and drug development, today announced the appointment of Robert Michael Poole, M.D., FACP to the newly created position of Chief Medical Officer effective January 20, 2004. Prior to joining Hypnion, Dr. Poole served as Vice President and Worldwide Therapy Leader for Neuroscience Clinical Development at Pfizer Global Research and Development in New London, CT. His immediate focus will be to accelerate the development of current programs, expand in- licensing efforts and enhance Hypnion's in-house development capabilities.
"Dr. Poole has extensive industry experience in pharmaceutical development and regulatory matters, both in the U.S. and abroad, that will significantly enhance Hypnion's clinical and strategic capabilities," said John F. Dee, President and Chief Executive Officer. "He has a proven ability to accelerate the clinical development process, with a successful track record of moving drugs from the filing of an IND application to the conclusion of the NDA process."
"Hypnion represents a tremendous opportunity to develop novel therapies for a vastly underserved patient population," commented Dr. Poole. "I am delighted to join the Hypnion team given the promise of Hypnion's drug programs and the competitive advantage the company has in pre-clinical development using its proprietary SCORE-2000(TM) system."
Dr. Poole received his Bachelor's degree from the University of California, Berkeley and his M.D. degree from the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine. He completed postgraduate clinical training in internal medicine at Strong Memorial Hospital, University of Rochester and in neurology at the University of Michigan Hospitals in Ann Arbor. He is board certified in internal medicine and neurology and is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians. Dr. Poole was a member of the Neurology faculties at the University of Michigan and the University of Rochester prior to joining Parke-Davis in 1996. At Pfizer, which acquired Parke-Davis in 2001, his group was responsible for clinical development plans from late-Phase 2 to registration for compounds aimed at neuroscience indications. His research activities have focused on clinical trials in sleep disorders, stroke, traumatic brain injury, neuropathic pain, epilepsy and anxiety. Dr. Poole currently holds an appointment as adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Neurology at Yale University.
In 2003, Hypnion closed a $47.5 million Series B venture financing round, for the purpose of advancing the company's lead insomnia program into clinical trials with several proprietary compounds that have shown superior pre- clinical efficacy and safety compared to current market leading drugs. The company is also advancing three other sleep disorder programs, which target primary sleep-wake pathways without evidence of abuse or addiction.
Hypnion is a neuroscience drug discovery company whose objective is to become the worldwide leader in sleep-wake neurobiology and pharmaceutical development. The company was founded by prominent and highly regarded scientists in the field of sleep disorder research to enable the discovery and development of novel therapies.
The company is addressing a tremendous worldwide market opportunity to serve people suffering from the broad category of sleep disorders, which includes disorders of sleep (e.g., insomnia, sleep apnea, restless leg syndrome), disorders of wakefulness and attention (illnesses causing chronic fatigue, ADHD) and circadian rhythm abnormalities. Recent research indicates that sleep disorders not only depress the immune system but may also make us vulnerable to many other diseases including diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, heart failure, and even stroke or depression. Current therapies for these conditions have significant limitations, especially when used chronically or for treating the elderly. The patient population for sleep disorders is larger than those for anxiety or depression, and represents a potential $10 billion U.S. market opportunity. Hypnion is initially targeting insomnia, and according to the National Sleep Foundation's Sleep in America Poll 2002, approximately 35% of the adult population reports that they have experienced insomnia every night or almost every night within the past year.
Hypnion has proprietary rights to the worlds' most advanced pre-clinical sleep-wake system, SCORE-2000(TM), which is highly predictive of human response for many sleep-wake efficacy and side-effect variables, significantly lowering clinical trial risk. The system allows high-throughput testing of drug candidates at the pre-clinical stage to optimize the next generation of safe, non-addictive therapies for this vast and untreated market.
Contacts: John F. Dee Michael E. Fitzgerald
President and CEO Chief Financial Officer
Hypnion, Inc. Hypnion, Inc.