Healthcare Industry News: Ligand Pharmaceuticals
News Release - June 1, 2006
Gloucester Pharmaceuticals Appoints Jean C. Nichols, Ph.D., Executive Vice President and Chief Scientific OfficerCAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(HSMN NewsFeed)--June 1, 2006--Gloucester Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a privately held cancer therapeutics development company, today announced the appointment of Jean C. Nichols, Ph.D., as Executive Vice President and Chief Scientific Officer. In this newly created position Dr. Nichols will play a pivotal role in the further development of the company's lead product, depsipeptide, for T-cell lymphomas and other oncology indications. Dr. Nichols will also participate in clinical development, strategic business development and collaborative research relationships.
Dr. Nichols is a biopharmaceutical industry executive with significant operating, technical, development, general management and fundraising experience. While at Seragen Corporation (now Ligand Pharmaceuticals) she led the team responsible for development of ONTAKŪ, the first drug approved for the treatment of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL), directing all product development activities, manufacturing, clinical trials and regulatory affairs. Her research experience includes infectious diseases, biochemistry, molecular genetics, drug delivery and diagnostics.
"We are pleased to have Jean join the senior executive team at Gloucester," commented Martin Vogelbaum, Chairman of Gloucester's Board of Directors. "Her oncology development experience, especially with ONTAKŪ will be invaluable as depsipeptide continues to progress through its pivotal trial in CTCL and enters additional pivotal and clinical studies later this year."
Since 2003 Dr. Nichols has been founder and president of JNichols, LLC, a consulting firm specializing in strategic positioning and execution of product development programs for biopharmaceutical companies. From 2000 to 2002, Dr. Nichols served as managing director and chief operating officer at StoneGate Partners LLC, an investment firm focused on private placement financing for high growth, technology based companies. From 1983 - 1999, Dr. Nichols served in a variety of senior management positions at Seragen, Inc., becoming president and chief scientific officer in 1996. During her tenure the company gained FDA approval for their first therapeutic product, ONTAKŪ, which is currently approved for CTCL. Dr. Nichols also managed Seragen's corporate alliances, including Eli Lilly and U.S. Surgical and consummated an $80 million merger with Ligand Pharmaceuticals in 1999.
Dr. Nichols received both her B.S. in biology and Ph.D. in bacteriology and immunology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She completed her post-doctoral training at Harvard Medical School and served as a member of the junior faculty before entering the biotechnology industry.
About Depsipeptide (FK228)
Depsipeptide is a novel agent in a new class of anti-cancer drugs known as histone deacetylase inhibitors. The Company is conducting a pivotal study of depsipeptide for patients with cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL). The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reviewed the trial protocol under its Special Protocol Assessment (SPA) process prior to the initiation of the pivotal study. Depsipeptide has received both Fast Track and Orphan Drug designation for CTCL by the FDA, and Orphan Drug Designation from the EMEA, as monotherapy for CTCL patients who have relapsed, or become refractory to, at least one prior systemic therapy. Depsipeptide is in phase II trials for a variety of other hematologic malignancies and solid tumors including peripheral T-cell lymphoma, hormone refractory prostate cancer and multiple myeloma. These trials and others are being conducted by the Company or the National Cancer institute (NCI), under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with the Company.
About Gloucester Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Gloucester Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a privately held, venture-backed company that develops and commercializes innovative products for the treatment of cancer patients. Gloucester is headquartered in Cambridge, MA. For more information visit our website at www.gloucesterpharma.com.
For more information on Gloucester's clinical trials, please call 888-GPI-CTCL (888-474-2825) or visit www.clinicaltrials.gov/ct/show/NCT00106431 regarding Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma or www.clinicaltrials.gov/ct/show/NCT00106418 regarding prostate cancer.
Source: Gloucester Pharmaceuticals
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