Healthcare Industry News:  kidney cancer 

Biopharmaceuticals Oncology Personnel

 News Release - May 18, 2006

Geron Names Laurence Elias, M.D., Vice President, Oncology Clinical Development

MENLO PARK, Calif.--(HSMN NewsFeed)--May 18, 2006--Geron Corp. (Nasdaq:GERN ) announced today the addition of Laurence Elias, M.D., to the management team as Vice President, Oncology Clinical Development.

Dr. Elias will oversee the company's clinical trials of its lead anti-cancer compound, GRN163L, which is a direct inhibitor of human telomerase, and GRNVAC1, its therapeutic vaccine product targeting telomerase. His responsibilities will include the planning, design and execution of clinical trial strategies and protocols as well as the monitoring of these multi-center clinical trials.

"Larry brings a wealth of experience in the areas of clinical trial design and clinical trial management in oncology," said Thomas B. Okarma, Ph.D., M.D., Geron's president and chief executive officer. "His addition comes at the time we are adding new talent to complement our existing management team as we're moving through the early part of our clinical activities."

Prior to joining Geron, Dr. Elias was director of clinical and medical affairs of Chiron Corp.'s oncology therapeutic unit. In this position, he oversaw the company's clinical trials of Proleukin® in approved and investigational indications. Dr. Elias further applied his clinical expertise to developmental and strategic planning of pipeline oncology molecules.

Prior to working in biotechnology, Dr. Elias served as Chief of Hematology and Oncology at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine. In addition to clinical, administrative and educational functions for the University, Dr. Elias led several multi-center national cooperative group Phase I, II and III clinical trials for leukemia and renal cell carcinoma indications. He was also the Principal Investigator for translational and basic research programs supported by the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health and the American Cancer Society.

Dr. Elias is a member of the American Society of Hematology, American Society of Clinical Oncology, International Society of Biological Therapy for Cancer and American Association for Cancer Research. He has served as president of the New Mexico Society of Clinical Oncology and as a board member of the California kidney cancer Foundation.

He holds a medical degree from Stanford University School of Medicine and a bachelor's degree from Princeton University. Dr. Elias completed his postdoctoral training in internal medicine, hematology and medical oncology at Stanford University Medical Center.

Geron is a Menlo Park, Calif.-based biopharmaceutical company developing and commercializing three groups of products: i) therapeutic products for oncology that target telomerase; ii) pharmaceuticals that activate telomerase in tissues impacted by senescence, injury or degenerative disease; and iii) cell-based therapies derived from its human embryonic stem cell platform for applications in multiple chronic diseases. For more information, visit

This news release may contain forward-looking statements made pursuant to the "safe harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Investors are cautioned that such forward-looking statements in this press release regarding potential applications of Geron's technology constitute forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, risks inherent in the development and commercialization of potential products, uncertainty of clinical trial results or regulatory approvals or clearances, need for future capital, dependence upon collaborators and maintenance of our intellectual property rights. Actual results may differ materially from the results anticipated in these forward-looking statements. Additional information on potential factors that could affect our results and other risks and uncertainties are detailed from time to time in Geron's periodic reports, including the quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the period ended March 31, 2006.

Source: Geron

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