Healthcare Industry News: BD
News Release - July 6, 2006
Pathwork Diagnostics Formed From Venture-Backed AcquisitionNew Cancer-Focused Molecular Diagnostics Company Names Board and CEO
SAN JOSE, Calif., July 6 (HSMN NewsFeed) -- With new venture capital funding, Predicant Biosciences has acquired San Jose-based Pathwork Informatics and named the merged company Pathwork Diagnostics, the new corporation announced today. Financial details were not disclosed. The new company will develop and commercialize innovative genomic diagnostic tests for oncology.
Pathwork Diagnostics is backed with $11 million in new venture funding from Prospect Venture Partners, Advent Venture Partners, Novus Ventures, Venrock Associates and Versant Ventures.
Deborah J. Neff, Predicant's chief executive officer, has been appointed president and chief executive officer of Pathwork Diagnostics and will serve on the company's board of directors. Previously, Ms. Neff was worldwide president of BD Biosciences.
Richard Bastiani, Ph.D., has agreed to serve as Pathwork Diagnostics' board chairman. Dr. Bastiani has extensive experience in developing and commercializing innovative technology and in building successful businesses. He is chairman of Response Biomedical Corp., a maker of rapid on-site clinical and environmental diagnostic tests; former chairman of ID Biomedical, a human vaccine company acquired by GlaxoSmithKline in December 2005; and previously served as president of Syva Company, a global clinical diagnostics company. Richard Klausner, M.D., former global health executive director of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's Global Health program and former director of the National Cancer Institute, will also serve on Pathwork Diagnostics' board of directors. Another new company board member is Kenneth Nussbacher, fellow at Affymetrix, where he previously served as executive vice president and chief financial officer.
Also appointed to the Pathwork Diagnostics board are: James B. Tananbaum, M.D., managing director at Prospect Venture Partners; Shahzad Malik, general partner at Advent Venture Partners; and Greg Lahann, managing director at Novus Ventures.
"We believe Pathwork Diagnostics' innovative cancer tests will bring the routine application of personalized medicine one step closer to reality. For the first time, the market will have access to a practical platform for harnessing the power of gene-expression profiling in a clinical diagnostic setting," said Ms. Neff. "The microarray-based diagnostic tests under development will provide clinicians with previously unavailable diagnostic insights that will transform cancer patient care and ultimately help improve outcomes."
Glenda Anderson, founder and chief executive officer of Pathwork Informatics, has been named chief technology officer of the new company. "Our expanded leadership team and new funding will better enable us to commercialize our first product and further develop our pipeline of diagnostic tests," said Ms. Anderson.
Pathwork Diagnostics' first product will be a test to aid in the diagnosis of the origin of secondary and/or unspecified malignant cancers. For example, cancer of unknown primary (CUP) is one of the top-ten most common types of cancer and the fourth leading cause of cancer death in the world. CUP occurs when metastatic cancer is found, but the location where the cancer originated cannot be determined. National Comprehensive Cancer Network guidelines for CUP emphasize the importance of identifying the tissue of origin so that cancer-specific treatment recommendations can be followed. Standard pathological techniques with CUP, however, identify the primary tumor site less than 20 percent of the time in living patients, demonstrating the strong unmet need for a more robust diagnostic solution.
About Pathwork Diagnostics
Pathwork Diagnostics develops and commercializes innovative molecular diagnostic tests for cancer that are designed to provide pathologists and oncologists with high-value information that can help transform patient care. The company's tests combine proprietary genomic analytics on a microarray platform and are developed in collaboration with leading cancer centers and universities. Pathwork Diagnostics is located in San Jose, Calif. For more information, please visit www.pathworkdx.com or call 408-279-4390.
Source: Pathwork Diagnostics
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