SAN DIEGO, April 23 Ceregene, Inc., a biopharmaceuticalcompany, today announced that it has added two key people to its managementteam. Maurice Mezzino has been hired to the position of vice president, chiefbusiness officer, and Andrea Loewen-Rodriguez joins the company as seniordirector, regulatory affairs. These positions have been created to supportdevelopment and commercial activities as Ceregene transitions to a later stagebiotechnology company with two product candidates in clinical trials --CERE-110 for Alzheimer's disease and CERE-120 for Parkinson's disease.
"We are excited to add two such experienced professionals to ourleadership team during a time when we are advancing our product candidatesinto late-stage clinical development, with CERE-120 for Parkinson's diseasepotentially entering Phase 3 clinical trials next year," statedJeffrey M. Ostrove, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer. "Mauricewill be a key contributor toward our business and partnering strategies havingstructured and completed multiple deals during his career, and Andrea willplay an important role in liaising with the FDA and European regulators in ourefforts to move our therapies through the approval process."
Maurice Mezzino, a business development executive with more than 20 yearsof biopharmaceutical industry experience, joins us from Biogen Idec, where hehas been since 2000, serving most recently as vice president, businessdevelopment, responsible for managing the west coast business developmentteam. Among his accomplishments, Mr. Mezzino spearheaded an oncologystrategic alliance between IDEC and Biogen in 2003, which was a precursor tothe merger between the companies later that year; and in 2006 he led theacquisition of Conforma Therapeutics. Prior to Biogen Idec, Mr. Mezzino helda variety of positions in clinical development, business planning, strategicmarketing and business development at Bristol-Myers Squibb Company,Schering-Plough Corporation, Hoechst-Roussel Pharmaceuticals and AyerstLaboratories. Maurice received a BA degree in environmental biology fromRutgers University, an MS degree in microbiology from Louisiana StateUniversity and an MBA in finance from Fairleigh Dickinson University. He isalso a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA).
Andrea Loewen-Rodriguez, a regulatory affairs professional with more than18 years of biopharmaceutical industry experience, joins us from theregulatory affairs division at Biogen Idec, where she has been since 2000.Her responsibilities included developing and implementing global regulatorystrategies and submissions for multiple products in clinical development.Prior to Biogen Idec, Ms. Loewen-Rodriguez held various positions with NexellTherapeutics and Baxter Healthcare Corp. Andrea holds a Regulatory AffairsCertification and received her BA degree in biology from Gustavus AdolphusCollege.
Ceregene, Inc. is a San Diego-based biotechnology company focused on thedelivery of nervous system growth factors for the treatment ofneurodegenerative disorders using gene delivery. Ceregene's clinical programsinclude CERE-110, an AAV2 based vector expressing nerve growth factor that iscurrently in Phase 1 studies for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, andCERE-120 (AAV2-Neurturin) which has completed enrollment of a controlledPhase 2 study for Parkinson's disease. CERE-135 and CERE-140 are inpreclinical development for ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease) and ocular disorders,respectively. Ceregene was launched in January 2001. The company's investorsinclude Alta Partners, MPM Capital, Investor Growth Capital and Cell Genesys,Inc. (Nasdaq: CEGE) as well as Hamilton BioVentures and California TechnologyPartners.
SOURCE Ceregene, Inc.