Healthcare Industry News: Herceptin
News Release - March 25, 2008
Monogram Announces Promotion of Gordon Parry, PhD, to Vice President, Research and Development, OncologySOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., March 25 (HSMN NewsFeed) -- Monogram Biosciences, Inc. (Nasdaq: MGRM ) today announced the promotion of Gordon Parry, PhD, to the position of Vice President, Research and Development, Oncology. Dr. Parry will have responsibility for Monogram's oncology research and development programs, including the further development of Monogram's proprietary VeraTag(TM) technology platform and the first product based on that platform - the HERMark(TM) Breast Cancer Assay.
Dr. Parry joined Monogram in 2007 as Senior Director of Research and Development, Oncology. As Vice President, he will continue to manage Monogram's oncology research and development team. Prior to joining Monogram, he worked for twelve years at Berlex Biosciences where he was the Department Head of their Cancer Research Department. Previously, he held a variety of research positions in academia, including ten years at the University of California's Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory. He is currently an Advisory Council Member for the California Breast Cancer Research Program.
"Gordon has a tremendous experience base in the development of cancer therapeutics and has already contributed significantly to the development of our VeraTag platform," said William Young, Monogram's CEO. "HERMark, our first product, is currently the subject of studies to establish its clinical utility in breast cancer and I am pleased to have someone of Gordon's experience and talent working on the further enhancement of the VeraTag technology platform and the expansion of our portfolio of assays, both in breast and other cancers."
HERmark is a proprietary diagnostic tool designed to accurately identify and quantify HER2 protein and its activated form of HER2:HER2 homodimers. In several clinical cohorts of patients with metastatic breast cancer who were selected with conventional HER2 assays, quantitative levels of HER2 and HER2:HER2 homodimers, as measured by HERmark, correlate with clinical outcomes following treatment with the HER2-directed monoclonal antibody trastuzumab (Herceptin®, Genentech), suggesting that the assay can stratify patients with breast cancer according to their degree of susceptibility to the drug. Additional studies of HERmark in the adjuvant setting are in progress.
The VeraTag technology platform provides accurate and quantitative measurements of proteins and activated proteins, including protein dimers. Initial assay development is directed at the measurement of activated epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and other HER receptor family members that are directly targeted by approved cancer therapies. VeraTag assays will potentially enable healthcare providers to identify the appropriate course of treatment for cancers that have a particular molecular profile. VeraTag assays may also be developed to measure other proteins and signaling pathways that are key drivers of proliferation and survival in cancer cells.
Monogram is a biotechnology company advancing individualized medicine by discovering, developing and marketing innovative products to guide and improve treatment of serious infectious diseases and cancer. The Company's products are designed to help doctors optimize treatment regimens for their patients that lead to better outcomes and reduced costs. The Company's technology is also being used by numerous biopharmaceutical companies to develop new and improved antiviral therapeutics and vaccines as well as targeted cancer therapeutics. More information about the Company and its technology can be found on its web site at www.monogrambio.com.
Forward Looking Statements
Certain statements in this press release are forward-looking. These forward-looking statements include references to the ability of VeraTag technology, including HERmark, to significantly improve the information available to physicians, results of studies intended to demonstrate clinical utility of our VeraTag technology and HERmark products and anticipated clinical and laboratory validation of these products in a CLIA setting. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties and other factors, which may cause actual results to differ materially from the anticipated results or other expectations expressed in such forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to: risks and uncertainties relating to the performance of our products; the growth in revenues; the risk that our VeraTag assays may not predict response to particular therapeutic agents; the risk that we may not be able to obtain additional cohorts of patient samples for additional VeraTag studies, our ability to successfully conduct clinical studies and the results obtained from those studies; whether larger confirmatory clinical studies will confirm the results of initial studies; our ability to establish reliable, high-volume operations at commercially reasonable costs; expected reliance on a few customers for the majority of our revenues; the annual renewal of certain customer agreements; actual market acceptance of our products and adoption of our technological approach and products by pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies; our estimate of the size of our markets; our estimates of the levels of demand for our products; the impact of competition; the timing and ultimate size of pharmaceutical company clinical trials; whether payers will authorize reimbursement for our products and services and the amount of such reimbursement that may be allowed; whether the FDA or any other agency will decide to further regulate our products or services; whether the draft guidance on Multivariate Index Assays issued by FDA will be subsequently determined to apply to our current or planned products; whether we will encounter problems or delays in automating our processes; the ultimate validity and enforceability of our patent applications and patents; the possible infringement of the intellectual property of others; whether licenses to third party technology will be available; whether we are able to build brand loyalty and expand revenues; restrictions on the conduct of our business imposed by the Pfizer, Merrill Lynch and other debt agreements; the impact of additional dilution if our convertible debt is converted to equity; and whether we will be able to raise sufficient capital in the future, if required. For a discussion of other factors that may cause actual events to differ from those projected, please refer to our most recent annual report on Form 10-K and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, as well as other subsequent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. We do not undertake, and specifically disclaim any obligation, to revise any forward-looking statements to reflect the occurrence of anticipated or unanticipated events or circumstances after the date of such statements.
HERmark and VeraTag are trademarks of Monogram Biosciences. Herceptin is a registered trademark of Genentech, Inc.
Source: Monogram Biosciences
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