Healthcare Industry News: Halozyme Therapeutics
News Release - March 2, 2009
Rockwell Medical Technologies, Inc. Appoints Richard Yocum, M.D. as VP of Drug Development and Medical AffairsDr. Yocum Will Spearhead Clinical Development of Lead Product SFP and Renal Therapeutics Pipeline
WIXOM, Mich., March 2, 2009 -- (Healthcare Sales & Marketing Network) -- Rockwell Medical Technologies, Inc. (NasdaqGM:RMTI ), a fully-integrated biopharmaceutical company offering innovative products and services targeting end-stage renal disease (ERSD), chronic kidney disease (CKD), and iron deficiency anemia, reported today that it has appointed Richard Yocum, M.D. to Vice President of Drug Development and Medical Affairs, a newly formed position. Dr. Yocum will be responsible for leading the clinical development of Soluble Ferric Pyrophosphate (SFP), the Company's proprietary iron maintenance product currently progressing through a U.S. Phase 2 clinical study, as well as overseeing all aspects of clinical research and development.
Mr. Robert L. Chioini, Chairman, CEO and President of Rockwell stated, ``We welcome Richard to the Rockwell team. He brings a wealth of experience and knowledge in clinical development and has coordinated clinical drug development processes across the United States, Europe and Japan. In addition, he has direct hands-on experience in all stages of the clinical development process, from pre-IND through post-marketing trials. We are confident that Richard's expertise will enable Rockwell to successfully bring SFP to the market, as well as to develop proprietary SFP related extensions to penetrate additional markets.''
Prior to joining Rockwell, Dr. Yocum spent 15 years in clinical drug development and project team management within the biopharmaceutical industry. Dr. Yocum worked as Vice President, Clinical Development & Medical Affairs at Halozyme Therapeutics; as Vice President, Clinical Development & Medical Affairs at Chugai Pharma USA; as Executive Medical Director of Clinical Research at Ligand Pharmaceuticals and as Associate Director of Clinical Research at Gensia. Dr. Yocum graduated summa cum laude from Dartmouth College and earned his medical degree from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He later completed his internal medicine residency at the University of California San Diego and had a General Medicine practice for 11 years.
Dr. Yocum commented, ``Rockwell is an exciting company with a breakthrough iron product to treat anemia. I believe SFP addresses an important unmet need for patients, has high probability of FDA market approval and the potential to improve the standard of care for dialysis patients throughout the world. I look forward to working with Rob and the rest of the Rockwell team to guide SFP through clinical development, and ultimately market approval.''
About Soluble Ferric Pyrophosphate (SFP):
SFP is a novel, physiological iron maintenance therapy designed to treat or prevent iron deficiency anemia in ESRD patients. SFP is a proprietary, water-soluble form of iron that travels directly to the bloodstream and transfers iron at a cellular level, similar to normal healthy iron uptake. SFP is a continuous maintenance treatment consisting of small doses administered with every dialysis session to maintain iron status tests stable within target, as per Kidney Disease Quality Outcomes Initiative (KDOQI) recommendations. Clinical trials have shown that SFP delivered during each dialysis treatment, via the Company's dialysate, maintains optimal iron balance and avoids liver toxicity while decreasing associated pharmaceutical intravenous iron administration costs. Recent academic studies have shown that more frequent maintenance doses of iron improve the therapeutic response and benefits of recombinant erythropoietin treatments. Rockwell has licensed exclusive world-wide rights and has secured patents for SFP in multiple countries, including the three largest dialysis markets in the world; the United States, Japan and the European Union. The total U.S. market for IV-iron is approximately $500 million annually while global market potential is approximately $850 million.
About Rockwell Medical Technologies:
Rockwell is a fully-integrated biopharmaceutical company offering innovative products and services initially targeting end-stage renal disease (ESRD), chronic kidney disease (CKD), and iron deficiency anemia. An established manufacturer and leader in delivering high-quality hemodialysis concentrates/dialysates to dialysis providers and distributors in the U.S. and abroad, Rockwell's products are used to maintain human life by removing toxins and replacing critical nutrients in the dialysis patient's bloodstream. Dialysis is a process that duplicates kidney function for those patients who suffer from ESRD. There are approximately 375,000 ESRD patients in the United States growing at an annual rate of 4 percent and approximately 2 million ESRD patients world-wide.
The Company is currently developing unique, proprietary renal drug therapies for iron treatment. These exclusive renal drug therapies support disease management initiatives to improve the quality of life and care of dialysis patients and are designed to deliver safe and effective therapy, while decreasing drug administration costs and improving patient convenience. Rockwell is developing a pipeline of drug therapies not only for iron deficiency in kidney disease, but for other critical care conditions such as oncology and gastroenterology. Please visit http://www.rockwellmed.com for more information.
Certain statements in this press release constitute ``forward-looking statements'' within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words such as ``may,'' ``might,'' ``will,'' ``should,'' ``believe,'' ``expect,'' ``anticipate,'' ``estimate,'' ``continue,'' ``predict,'' ``forecast,'' ``projected,'' ``intend'' or similar expressions, or statements regarding intent, belief, or current expectations, are forward-looking statements. While the Company believes these forward-looking statements are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on any such forward-looking statements which are based on information available to us on the date of this release. Because these forward-looking statements are based upon estimates and assumptions that are subject to significant business, economic and competitive uncertainties, many of which are beyond the Company's control or are subject to change, actual results could be materially different. Factors which could cause such a difference include, without limitation, the risk factors set forth in the Company's SEC filings. The forward-looking statements should be considered in light of these risks and uncertainties. Rockwell does not undertake, and expressly disclaims any obligation, to update or alter statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.
Source: Rockwell Medical Technologies
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