Healthcare Industry News:  Novartis 

Biopharmaceuticals Oncology Personnel

 News Release - February 19, 2014

Ignyta Appoints Sara Zaknoen, M.D., as Chief Medical Officer

SAN DIEGO--(Healthcare Sales & Marketing Network)--Ignyta, Inc. (RXDX), an oncology precision medicine biotechnology company, announced today that Sara Zaknoen, M.D., has been appointed as Chief Medical Officer, assuming full-time responsibilities for the role from James L. Freddo, M.D., who was previously serving as Ignyta’s Chief Medical Officer on a consulting basis.

“Sara brings to Ignyta a wealth of experience in the life sciences field, particularly in pharmaceutical drug development and clinical oncology research, and the ability to combine a people focused approach with deep scientific acumen,” said Jonathan Lim, M.D., Chairman and CEO of Ignyta. “Her extensive experience in both biotech and large pharma and prior accomplishments in oncology drug development will make her instrumental to the company’s success as we strive to create value for patients with our proprietary oncology drug candidates. We also want to thank Jim for his outstanding contributions to Ignyta as our consulting CMO, and look forward to continuing to work with him as he serves Ignyta in an advisory capacity.”

Dr. Zaknoen was previously Chief Medical Officer of Polynoma LLC from May 2012 to January 2014, where she led the medical efforts of the adaptive Phase 3 pivotal Melanoma Antigen Vaccine Immunotherapy Study (MAVIS). From January 2007 until February 2012, Dr. Zaknoen served as Chief Medical Officer of Tragara Pharmaceuticals, Inc., where she spearheaded the design and successful completion of Phase 1 and 2 studies for two compounds. From September 2006 to December 2006, Dr. Zaknoen served as Chief Medical Officer of Cabrellis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, contributing to the sale of Cabrellis to Pharmion Corporation in November 2006.

Dr. Zaknoen served as Executive Director of Phase 2/3 Clinical Oncology Research of Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp. from September 2002 until September 2006. At Novartis, Dr. Zaknoen directed global development of five drugs in Phase 2 and 3, including expanding the label for Gleevec® and driving the registration for Tasigna®, and she served as clinical representative to the Business Development & Licensing team for the Oncology Business Unit. From April 1998 to September 2002, Dr. Zaknoen was Director of Clinical Oncology Research at Schering-Plough Research Institute, where she was a key member of the team directing the registration and launch of Temodar®.

Dr. Zaknoen’s prior positions include Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center; Director of Experimental Therapeutics at the Western Pennsylvania Hospital, Western Pennsylvania Cancer Institute; Medical Staff Fellow at the National Cancer Institute; and internship, residency and fellowship in hematology/oncology at the University of Minnesota. Dr. Zaknoen holds a B.S. in chemistry and biology from Valparaiso University and an M.D. degree from the Indiana University School of Medicine.

About Ignyta, Inc.

Ignyta, Inc., located in San Diego, California, is a biotechnology company developing precision medicine with integrated Rx/Dx solutions for cancer patients. Our goal is to discover and develop revolutionary new drugs that target activated genes in cancer cells for the customized treatment of cancer patients. Our present focus is on the development of RXDX-101 and RXDX-102, our proprietary oral tyrosine kinase inhibitors that target solid tumor indications, and advancing our novel Spark discovery programs that leverage our proprietary cancer genomic and epigenomic knowledge bases. For more information, please visit:

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements as that term is defined in Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Statements in this press release that are not purely historical are forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements include, among other things, references to the expected contributions of our new Chief Medical Officer; our progress in developing new oncology therapies; the proprietary nature of our product candidates; and the potential to create value for patients. Actual results could differ from those projected in any forward-looking statements due to numerous factors. Such factors include, among others, our ability to retain important members of our management team and attract other qualified personnel; our ability to raise the additional funding we will need to continue to pursue our business and product development plans; the inherent uncertainties associated with developing new products or technologies and operating as a development stage company; our ability to develop, complete clinical trials for, obtain approvals for and commercialize any of our product candidates; competition in the industry in which we operate; and market conditions. These forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this press release, and we assume no obligation to update the forward-looking statements, or to update the reasons why actual results could differ from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Investors should consult all of the information set forth herein and should also refer to the risk factor disclosure set forth in the reports and other documents we file with the SEC available at, including without limitation our Current Report on Form 8-K dated October 31, 2013 and amended November 14, 2013 and December 9, 2013.

Source: Ignyta

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