Healthcare Industry News: AVONEX
News Release - September 18, 2006
Targanta Appoints Mark Leuchtenberger, Former President and CEO of Therion Biologics Corporation, as President and CEOPierre E.G. Etienne, M.D., Appointed to Newly Created Position of Chief Development Officer
INDIANAPOLIS, and ST. LAURENT, Quebec, Sept. 18 (HSMN NewsFeed) -- Targanta Therapeutics, a privately held biopharmaceutical company developing antibacterial drugs, announced today the appointment of Mark Leuchtenberger as the company's new President and Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Leuchtenberger joins Targanta from Therion Biologics, where he was formerly President and Chief Executive Officer. Under Mr. Leuchtenberger's leadership at Therion Biologics, the company filed its first IND, progressed through Phase 3 trials, and completed the build up of Therion's manufacturing capabilities.
Pierre E.G. Etienne, M.D., who has served as Chief Executive Officer for three years, will assume a new role as Chief Development Officer for Targanta.
"Mark brings to Targanta his extensive experience in product development, commercialization, and global sales and marketing. As Targanta prepares to move its lead product, oritanvancin, one of the few promising late-stage antibiotic drug candidates, through the regulatory process, Mark will be a tremendous asset," said Dr. Etienne. "Mark's leadership gives me the opportunity to focus on the further development and expansion of Targanta's portfolio."
"Pierre orchestrated the acquisition of oritanvancin for Targanta. Most importantly, his success in hiring the seasoned high-level executives from Lilly who have worked with each other in the past on the development of this drug is a true testament to his insight, leadership and the drug's potential. I am proud and honored to be working with this highly talented and experienced team," commented Mr. Leuchtenberger. "I believe that oritavancin has the potential to become the best-in-class antibiotic for serious gram-positive infections. I look forward to the successful clinical development and registration of this promising antibiotic, as well as the development of Targanta's product pipeline."
In addition to holding senior positions in sales, marketing, and business development, Mr. Leuchtenberger has developed strategies for product launches, implemented effective corporate restructuring, and managed global supply chains and staffs. Prior to joining Therion, Mr. Leuchtenberger spent 11 years at Biogen, where he managed the North American launch of AVONEX® and advanced the company's U.S. and European leadership position in multiple sclerosis. Mr. Leuchtenberger obtained his M.B.A. from the Yale School of Management and his B.A. from Wake Forest University.
Oritavancin, Targanta's lead product candidate, is a once-daily, semi-synthetic glycopeptide antibiotic with rapid bactericidal activity against all clinically relevant serious gram-positive infections, including multi-resistant strains. Oritavancin's multiple targets and mechanisms of action work against the development of resistant strains, which is important when treating serious gram-positive infections. To date, 1,566 individuals have received oritavancin in clinical trials, including two large multicenter Phase III studies to demonstrate oritavancin as an effective and safe therapy for complicated skin and skin structure infections. Targanta expects to file a New Drug Application (NDA) for oritavancin with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2007.
About Targanta Therapeutics
Targanta Therapeutics is a privately-held biopharmaceutical company developing and commercializing antibacterial drugs to treat serious infections in the hospital setting. Its pipeline includes an array of antibacterial agents in various stages of development. The company is headquartered in Indianapolis, IN. For further information about Targanta, visit the company website, http://www.targanta.com.
Source: Targanta Therapeutics
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