SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., Feb. 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Receptor BioLogix Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing newly discovered protein therapeutics to treat cancer, autoimmune, metabolic and other diseases, today announced the appointment of Louis E. "Gene" Burton, Ph.D., as vice president of process sciences. Dr. Burton will be a key member of the company's management team, responsible for strategic and technical direction of drug candidate development through clinical trials and product commercialization.
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"Dr. Burton brings an outstanding record of leadership as a senior scientist and executive manager with large-company expertise in drug commercialization to successfully build a world-class development program for Receptor BioLogix," said Michael Shepard, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer. "His extensive experience in biopharmaceutical development will be a tremendous asset as we move our lead candidate, Dimercept(TM), closer to an Investigational New Drug (IND) application with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and subsequent clinical trials."
Dr. Burton brings more than 22 years of biotechnology industry experience -- over 17 years at Genentech Inc. and the remaining most recently at Bayer Corp., primarily focused on recombinant protein purification, process design and implementation. During this time he was directly involved with the downstream process design and associated regulatory documentation for multiple therapeutic and pre-IND candidate molecules. Additionally, he helped direct the purification design and small-scale production of more than 50 different research proteins under two different drug screening programs.
Prior to joining Receptor BioLogix, he served as director of purification and isolation development at Bayer Corp.'s biotechnology unit in Berkeley, Calif. At Genentech, he began his pharmaceutical career as a research protein chemist, and left the company as a senior scientist and group leader of process purification development. In addition to his biotechnology industry experience, Dr. Burton served as an assistant professor and adjunct assistant professor at The Rockefeller University, where he also gained post-doctoral experience following a post-doctoral fellowship at Stanford University. He is an active member of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, the Society of Neuroscience and the American Association for the Advancement of Science, with more than 50 peer-reviewed publications and five patents applied or issued. Dr. Burton earned a B.S. in chemistry from Montana State University, and a Ph.D. in biochemistry from Michigan State University.
About Receptor BioLogix
Receptor BioLogix Inc., based in South San Francisco, Calif., is a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing a newly discovered class of protein therapeutics to treat cancer, autoimmune, and other diseases. Founded in July 2003 with initial seed capital from Oregon Health Sciences University (OHSU), the company's lead pre-clinical product is Dimercept(TM) -- the first broad-spectrum anti-HER therapeutic molecule, and the first in a new class of receptor modulators called Intron Fusion Proteins (IFP's).
Dimercept is a naturally occurring protein that selectively blocks intracellular signaling triggered by members of the epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor family, including the HER-2 receptor that is abnormally expressed in some 30 percent of breast cancer patients. In contrast to other drugs that target this family, preclinical studies have shown Dimercept targets and blocks all members of the HER family of receptors - HER-1 (EGFR), HER-2, HER-3, and HER-4. This activity is not limited to only binding one member of the family (e.g., Genentech's Herceptin(R) and OmniTarg(TM), or ImClone's Erbitux(TM)), or to small proportions of receptors that have certain tyrosine kinase sequences (e.g., AstraZeneca's Iressa(R)). Malignancies predicted to respond to Dimercept include cancers of the prostrate, breast, lung, colon, ovary, brain and pancreas.
Based upon annual incidence, the total number of new patients that could be candidates for Dimercept treatment each year is more than 500,000 in the United States alone. By comparison, Herceptin which is approved only for HER-2 over-expressing breast cancer, can be potentially applied to about 53,000 new patients per year. Total revenues for Herceptin in 2001 were $385 million; Dimercept has the potential of exceeding $1 billion in annual sales.
Using its proprietary IFP/SCAN technology, Receptor BioLogix has identified multiple IFP candidates that can be applied to cancer, autoimmune and multiple other disease categories, and will enter into partnerships with other companies to advance this technology.
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