SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwire - August 02, 2012) - Portola Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a fully integrated biopharmaceutical company, today announced the appointment of Robert M. Califf, M.D., as an independent member of its board of directors. Dr. Califf is the Donald F. Fortin, M.D., professor of cardiology at Duke University School of Medicine, vice chancellor for clinical and translational research, and director of the Duke Translational Medicine Institute (DTMI). He is also professor of medicine in the Division of Cardiology at the Duke University Medical Center and a practicing cardiologist.
"Dr. Rob Califf will be an exceptional addition to Portola's board as he is an accomplished academic leader and has vast experience in global clinical trials and translational science," said William Lis, chief executive officer of Portola. "Rob's appointment comes at an opportune time for Portola as we recently advanced multiple programs in our hospital-based thrombosis franchise into mid- to late-stage clinical development. He will provide invaluable expertise in executing our clinical trials for betrixaban and our Factor Xa inhibitor antidote, as well as in navigating the regulatory path for those programs, which target indications that have limited or no approved therapies."
Considered an international leader in the fields of cardiovascular disease treatment, health outcomes, quality of care and medical economics, Dr. Califf has led many landmark global clinical trials in cardiovascular disease, including some of the most influential in the last decade. He was the founding director of the Duke Clinical Research Institute (DCRI), where he remains actively involved in the leadership, design and execution of multinational clinical trials. He also is a leader in evidence-based medicine and population and translational studies, and has authored or co-authored more than 1,000 peer-reviewed articles. As director of the DTMI, Dr. Califf leads a multifaceted organization focused on the transformation and translation of clinical discoveries into improved health outcomes. Califf also currently serves as co-chair of the Clinical Trials Transformation Initiative (CTTI), a public private partnership focused on improving the clinical trials system.
Dr. Califf completed his undergraduate studies at Duke University and earned his medical degree from Duke University Medical School. He completed his internship and internal medicine residency at the University of California, San Francisco, and a fellowship in cardiology at Duke.
About Portola Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Portola Pharmaceuticals discovers and develops innovative therapeutics based on targets with established proof of concept that are designed to provide significant advances over current treatments for cardiovascular and autoimmune/inflammatory diseases. Portola scientists have successfully collaborated for over 15 years on the discovery and development of novel small molecule agents targeting platelets, coagulation pathways and protein kinases. In thrombosis, Portola is independently developing betrixaban, a novel, oral, once-daily Factor Xa inhibitor anticoagulant that is currently being evaluated in the global, pivotal Phase 3 APEX Study, and PRT4445, the first universal Factor Xa inhibitor antidote in clinical development and a companion product to betrixaban. In inflammation, Portola is collaborating with Biogen Idec to develop and commercialize highly selective, novel oral Syk inhibitors for the treatment of various autoimmune and inflammatory diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus. The collaboration's lead molecule, PRT2607, has been shown to be a highly potent and specific oral inhibitor of Syk. Portola's broad chemistry capability also has led to the discovery of dual inhibitors of Syk and Janus Kinase (JAK) for chronic autoimmune indications and oncology. For additional information, visit www.portola.com.