Healthcare Industry News: Curis
News Release - February 5, 2007
Targanta Adds Executives to Management TeamCompany Appoints George Eldridge as CFO and Paul Gesellchen, Ph.D, as V.P. of Regulatory Affairs
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Feb. 5 (HSMN NewsFeed) -- Targanta Therapeutics, a privately held biopharmaceutical company developing antibacterial drugs, announced today the appointment of George Eldridge as the company's new Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Eldridge joins Targanta from Therion Biologics, where he was previously Chief Financial Officer. In addition, Targanta appointed Paul Gesellchen, Ph.D, as Vice President of Regulatory Affairs. Dr. Gesellchen was previously Senior Scientific Director in the U.S. Regulatory Affairs Department of Eli Lilly and Company.
"George comes to Targanta with a strong expertise in financial management, and an impressive track record of successful fundraising. Paul brings to the company more than 25 years of experience as a scientist and in the development of effective regulatory strategies. As Targanta moves its lead product, oritavancin, through the regulatory process toward commercialization, both bring exceptional talent and experience to our company," said Mark Leuchtenberger, President and Chief Executive Officer of Targanta.
Mr. Eldridge served as Chief Financial Officer at Therion since 2002 and prior to that as Chief Financial Officer for Curis, Inc. Before joining the biotechnology industry in 1993, he was an investment banker at Kidder Peabody & Co., Inc. Mr. Eldridge obtained his M.B.A. from the University of Chicago, and his B.A. from Dartmouth College.
Dr. Gesellchen joins Targanta from Eli Lilly and Company, where he most recently served as Senior Scientific Director in the U.S. Regulatory Affairs Department. In this role, he served as primary liaison to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and was responsible for leading a number of products in the Lilly endocrine portfolio through investigational new drug (IND), new drug application (NDA) and supplemental new drug application (sNDA) submissions. In addition, Dr. Gesellchen has strong expertise in label negotiations and successful regulatory strategy from his experience in coordinating meetings and advisory committee presentations with the FDA for Lilly's drug products. Prior to his role in regulatory affairs, Dr. Gesellchen served as a research scientist for Eli Lilly, leading a chemistry lab for almost 13 years, as well as publishing and lecturing extensively on discovery research. He obtained his Ph.D. in Pharmaceutical Chemistry from the University of Wisconsin- Madison, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Biochemistry at the Indiana University School of Medicine. Dr. Gesellchen obtained his B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
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, over 1,500 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 has operations in Cambridge, MA, Indianapolis, IN and Montreal, Canada. For further information about Targanta, visit the company website, www.targanta.com.
Source: Targanta Therapeutics
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