PENNINGTON, N.J. and SAN DIEGO, Feb. 2, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- OncoSec Medical Inc. (NASDAQ:ONCS) (the "Company" or "OncoSec") today announced the addition of two new executives to the company's management team.
Industry veteran Brian Leuthner has been appointed as OncoSec's Chief Operating Officer and Joe Smith has joined as Vice President of Business Development.
"We are delighted to welcome both Brian and Joe to OncoSec's management team," said Daniel J. O'Connor, President and Chief Executive Officer of OncoSec. "As we continue making progress in the development of our lead product candidate, TAVO™, in multiple ongoing clinical studies for a variety of oncology indications and COVID-19, we are actively seeking opportunities to expand our offering through strategic partnerships that maximize the full therapeutic potential of our technology. With the additions of Brian and Joe to our executive team, we are looking forward to leveraging their significant strategic, commercial and business development expertise as we work to bring transformative solutions to patients in need and value to our shareholders."
Mr. Leuthner joins OncoSec having held a variety of leadership positions over his 32 year biotech and pharmaceutical career, including CEO and Chief Operating Officer functions. For a decade, Mr. Leuthner was President, CEO and co-founder of Edge Therapeutics, Inc., an orphan disease-focused company. In 2019, Mr. Leuthner led the merger of Edge and PDS Biotechnology, an immune-oncology company. While at Edge, he developed a long-term vision, strategic plan and corporate culture that ensured a successful transition from a start-up company through late-stage development. Earlier in his career, Mr. Leuthner held a variety of additional leadership positions, including Fontus Pharmaceuticals, Inc., The Medicines Company, ESP Pharma, Cardinal Health, Johnson & Johnson, Thomas Ferguson Healthcare Advertising Agency and Glaxo Wellcome Company.
Joining OncoSec as Vice President of Business Development, Mr. Smith was most recently an independent transaction advisor and acting Head of Business Development to a number of biotechnology and specialty pharmaceutical companies, including an antibody-focused start-up, an orphan ophthalmology specialty business and a vaccine technology business focused on COVID-19. Previously, he was Executive Director & Head of Business Development & Strategy for EyePoint Pharmaceuticals where he led Strategy and Business and Corporate Development activity. Mr. Smith has led or managed Business and Corporate Development at three other specialty pharmaceutical companies including Adare Pharmaceuticals, Valeant Pharmaceuticals, and Aton Pharma. His experience also includes more than eight years between management consulting and biotechnology equity research.
As of February 2, 2021, Mr. Leuthner will be granted an initial grant of 150,000 stock options and Mr. Smith will be granted an initial grant of 35,000 stock options. These stock options will have an exercise price equal to the closing price of the Company's common stock on the date of grant and will be 25% vested on the date of grant, with the remaining 75% vesting quarterly over a two-year period. These stock options were granted as an inducement to Mr. Leuthner and Mr. Smith entering into employment with the Company in accordance with NASDAQ Listing Rule 5635(c)(4).
OncoSec's gene therapy technology combines TAVOTM (tavokinogene telseplasmid), a DNA plasmid-based interleukin-12 (IL-12), with an intra-tumoral electroporation gene delivery platform to achieve endogenous IL-12 production in the tumor microenvironment that enables the immune system to target and attack tumors throughout the body. TAVO has demonstrated a local and systemic anti-tumor response in several clinical trials, including the pivotal Phase 2b trial KEYNOTE-695 for metastatic melanoma and the KEYNOTE-890 Phase 2 trial in triple negative breast cancer (TNBC). TAVO™ has received both Orphan Drug and Fast-Track Designation by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration for the treatment of metastatic melanoma.
About OncoSec Medical Incorporated
OncoSec Medical Incorporated (the "Company," "OncoSec," "we" or "our") is a late-stage biotechnology company focused on developing cytokine-based intratumoral immunotherapies to stimulate the body's immune system to target and attack cancer. OncoSec's lead immunotherapy investigational product candidate – TAVO™ (tavokinogene telseplasmid) – enables the intratumoral delivery of DNA-based interleukin-12 (IL-12), a naturally occurring protein with immune-stimulating functions. The technology, which employs electroporation, is designed to produce a controlled, localized expression of IL-12 in the tumor microenvironment, enabling the immune system to target and attack tumors throughout the body. OncoSec has built a deep and diverse clinical pipeline utilizing TAVO™ as a potential treatment for multiple cancer indications either as a monotherapy or in combination with leading checkpoint inhibitors; with the latter potentially enabling OncoSec to address a great unmet medical need in oncology: anti-PD-1 non-responders. Results from recently completed clinical studies of TAVO™ have demonstrated a local immune response, and subsequently, a systemic effect as either a monotherapy or combination treatment approach along with an acceptable safety profile, warranting further development. In addition to TAVO™, OncoSec is identifying and developing new DNA-encoded therapeutic candidates and tumor indications for use with its new Visceral Lesion Applicator (VLA), to target deep visceral lesions, such as liver, lung or pancreatic lesions. For more information, please visit www.oncosec.com.
TAVO™ is a trademark of OncoSec Medical Incorporated.
KEYTRUDA® is a registered trademark of Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., a subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc.
Risk Factors and Forward-Looking Statements
This release, as well as other information provided from time to time by the Company or its employees, may contain forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements provide the Company's current beliefs, expectations and intentions regarding future events and involve risks, uncertainties (some of which are beyond the Company's control) and assumptions. For those statements, we claim the protection of the safe harbor for forward-looking statements contained in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. You can identify forward-looking statements by the fact that they do not relate strictly to historical or current facts. These statements may include words such as "anticipate," "believe," "could," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "may," "plan," "potential," "should," "will" and "would" and similar expressions (including the negative of these terms). Although we believe that expectations reflected in the forward- looking statements are reasonable, we cannot guarantee future results, levels of activity, performance or achievements. The Company intends these forward-looking statements to speak only at the time they are published on or as otherwise specified and does not undertake to update or revise these statements as more information becomes available, except as required under federal securities laws and the rules and regulations of the Securities Exchange Commission ("SEC"). In particular, you should be aware that the success and timing of our clinical trials, including safety and efficacy of our product candidates, patient accrual, unexpected or expected safety events, the impact of COVID-19 on the supply of our candidates or the initiation or completion of clinical trials and the usability of data generated from our trials may differ and may not meet our estimated timelines. Please refer to the risk factors and other cautionary statements provided in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended July 31, 2020 and subsequent periodic and current reports filed with the SEC (each of which can be found at the SEC's website www.sec.gov), as well as other factors described from time to time in the Company's filings with the SEC.
Assistant Vice President, Business Development & Operations
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SOURCE OncoSec Medical Incorporated