DENVER, CO--(Marketwired - May 01, 2014) - Omni Bio Pharmaceutical, Inc. ("Omni Bio") (OTCQB: OMBP), a biopharmaceutical company focused on the commercialization of alternative uses of alpha-1 antitrypsin (AAT) for the treatment of a variety of indications and the development of next-generation recombinant forms of AAT, today announced the appointment of Dr. Bruce D. Forrest to the position of Chief Development Officer.
Dr. Forrest is currently President of B D Forrest & Company, Inc., a biopharmaceutical consulting firm that provides scientific strategy and business development support to emerging and established pharmaceutical companies. Dr. Forrest has been retained over the past 18 months by Omni Bio to assist the Company with such services. In his expanded role of Chief Development Officer he will now also oversee implementation of the development plan for Omni Bio's lead Fc fusion recombinant AAT molecule that is being targeted for the treatment of Type 1 diabetes, graft versus host disease and various inflammatory conditions, including chronic gout. Included in this role will be interface and leadership responsibilities for work being performed by our recently engaged cell line optimization and product manufacturing partner, Gallus BioPharmaceuticals, Inc.
Dr. Forrest has over 25 years of industry experience in pharmaceutical development, including vaccines and biopharmaceuticals. Dr. Forrest was previously Senior Vice President in Vaccines R&D at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals where he was responsible for clinical and development activities for all late phase programs. From 2004-2008 he was head of Wyeth's R&D organization in Japan where he oversaw the successful regulatory approvals of several new drug entities. He previously worked in various clinical research roles at Chiron Corporation and United Biomedical, Inc. Dr. Forrest is a medical graduate (MD) from the University of Adelaide (Australia) where he specialized in immunology and has an MBA from the Warwick Business School (UK).
Dr. Bruce E. Schneider, CEO of Omni Bio, commented, "We are extremely pleased to have Dr. Forrest serve in this role for Omni Bio. His background as an immunologist and his proven track record in managing both non-clinical and clinical R&D functions will be enormously helpful to us as we pursue the ongoing development of recombinant AAT."
About Alpha-1 Antitrypsin (AAT)
AAT is the most abundant circulating serine protease inhibitor in the body and an acute phase reactant. Systemic deficiency in AAT due to genetic mutations can result in debilitating liver failure and chronic lung disease such as emphysema. Lifelong treatment with plasma-derived AAT, intravenously administered, is indicated for such patients. Recent evidence suggests that AAT plays an important role in modulating immunity, inflammation and apoptosis. AAT protects various cell types from cell death, inhibits caspases-1 and -3 activity and has been shown to be effective in a wide variety of animal models of human disease, including diabetes, graft versus host disease (rejection reactions following bone marrow or other transplantation procedures), refractory gout, myocardial infarction and inflammatory bowel disease.
About Omni Bio Pharmaceutical, Inc.
Omni Bio Pharmaceutical (www.omnibiopharma.com) is a biopharmaceutical company that is focused on alternative uses for AAT and on developing new recombinant forms that can be applied to the treatment of a broad range of indications as noted above. The Company holds licenses to patents and patent applications licensed from the University of Colorado and a privately held company. Since its formation, Omni Bio has supported research using animal models and human clinical studies that demonstrate that AAT is a promising agent for ameliorating these conditions. The Company is now focused on the development of a recombinant AAT Fc fusion molecule as a new biological entity.
Some of the statements made in this press release are forward-looking statements that reflect management's current views and expectations with respect to future events. These forward-looking statements are not a guarantee of future events and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, many of which are outside our control, which could cause actual events to differ materially from those expressed or implied by the statements. These risks and uncertainties are based on a number of factors, including but not limited to the business risks disclosed in our SEC filings, especially the section entitled "Risk Factors" in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2013. We undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.