Healthcare Industry News: schizophrenia
News Release - January 5, 2007
Xytis Pharmaceuticals Names Dr. Vincent F. Simmon President, Chief Executive Officer and DirectorIRVINE, Calif. and NYON, Switzerland, Jan. 5 (HSMN NewsFeed) -- Xytis Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a privately held biotechnology company focused on developing novel therapeutics to treat central nervous system (CNS) diseases, today announced that Vincent F. Simmon, Ph.D., has joined the company as President, Chief Executive Officer and member of the Board of Directors. Dr. Simmon has more than 25 years of experience developing products and growing companies in the biotechnology industry. During his career, Dr. Simmon has held chief executive officer and top management positions with both public and private companies and has managed the development of novel biotechnology products and the rapid growth of organizations.
"We are extremely pleased that Dr. Simmon has joined Xytis," stated Herve Guerin, non-Executive Chairman of Xytis. "Vince possesses a unique set of experiences and expertise, including previously leading a CNS company. That will be a great advantage to Xytis as we continue to grow the company and advance the development of our products through clinical trials."
Most recently Dr. Simmon was COO of Merrimack Pharmaceuticals where he was responsible for progressing its lead compound into Phase II clinical studies, and participated in raising more than $95 million in private financing. Previously, Dr. Simmon served as the President and CEO of Cortex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. a publicly listed biotech company based in Irvine, CA. Prior to Cortex, Dr. Simmon served as CEO of Prototech, Inc., Alpha 1 Biomedicals, Inc., and Viral Technologies, Inc. He has also served as Vice President of Research and Development at W.R. Grace & Co. and Genex Corp. Dr. Simmon received his B.A. in Biology and Chemistry from Amherst College, his M.S. in Plant Physiology from the University of Toledo, and earned his Ph.D. in Molecular and Microbiology from Brown University.
"I am excited to be joining Xytis at this critical time in its development," said Dr. Simmon. "Our lead compound, Anatibant (XY2405), is poised to enter a Phase II clinical trial for the treatment of traumatic brain injury and neboglamine (XY2401), a novel therapeutic for schizophrenia, recently entered Phase I dose escalation studies.
Dr. Werner Tschollar, a founder of Xytis and its interim CEO, will be Chief Medical Officer and Head of European Operations.
XY2405 is a highly potent, small molecule antagonist of the bradykinin B2 receptor targeting the treatment of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) by reducing the post-trauma inflammatory process. Phase I clinical trials have evaluated the safety and the pharmacokinetics of the compound in both healthy volunteers and in patients with severe TBI. In these early studies, the compound was shown to be safe and well tolerated. XY2405 has received Fast Track designation and Orphan Drug status in the EU and in the US in January 2004 and April 2005, respectively.
XY2401 is a novel small molecule targeting the treatment of cognitive and negative symptoms in schizophrenia. A recently completed placebo-controlled, single dose-escalation in 48 healthy volunteers indicated that XY2401 is safe and well tolerated, leading to the current multiple dose escalation study.
In addition, Xytis has a rich portfolio of proprietary preclinical compounds that are novel, highly selective allosteric modulators of nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors, GABA-A and other well-validated CNS targets. These molecules hold potential as fast-acting oral therapies for the treatment of disorders such as anxiety, schizophrenia, depression and drug addiction, with an improved side effect profile over existing therapeutics.
Xytis Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company focusing on the discovery and development of innovative CNS drug candidates. The company is privately held and was created in January 2006 by the merger of Xytis Pharmaceuticals Ltd. (UK) and Remergent, Inc. (USA). The company received funding from Atlas Venture, Sanderling Ventures, CDC Entreprises Innovation, and Ventech. Xytis Inc. is assembling a pipeline of innovative compounds with validated mechanisms of action, addressing major unmet clinical needs in CNS fields. The Company's most advanced compounds are currently in investigational clinical trials and have not been approved for the treatment of any disease.
Source: Xytis Pharmaceuticals
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