MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Feb. 12 iZumi Bio, Inc., announcedtoday the appointment of John P. Walker as Chief Executive Officer and amember of the company's Board of Directors. Walker was most recently theChairman and CEO of Novacea, Inc. which merged with Transcept PharmaceuticalsInc. in January 2009.
iZumi Bio is focused on the development of induced pluripotent stem (iPS)cell technology to transform drug discovery and enable the promise ofregenerative medicine.
"This is an exceptionally exciting time to be joining iZumi Bio, as we areseeing an increasing interest in the promise of stem cells to transform manyaspects of the pharmaceutical industry," said Walker. "iZumi Bio has aleading position in industrializing the potential of iPS cells. Our goal isto create fully annotated, disease specific human cell lines that willfundamentally change the way in which small molecule drug discovery anddevelopment will be conducted in the future."
He continued, "Additionally, the development of these differentiated celllines will enable the development of patient specific and cell replacementtherapies."
Prior to joining Novacea, Walker, serving as a consultant and investor,was Executive Chairman and Principal Executive Officer of Renovis Inc.;Chairman and Interim CEO of Guava Technologies; KAI Pharmaceuticals andCentaur Pharmaceuticals; and Chairman and CEO of Bayhill Therapeutics. From1993 to 2001, he was Chairman and CEO of Arris Pharmaceuticals and itssuccessor corporation AXYS Pharmaceuticals Inc., and previously was Chairmanand CEO of Vitaphore Corporation.
Walker began his career with American Hospital Supply Corporation, wherehe last served as President of the American Hospital Company. His many boardexperiences have included serving as Chairman of Signal Pharmaceuticals andMicrocide Pharmaceuticals Inc., and a director of Geron Corporation, DiscoveryPartners Inc., and several other private companies.
"We are very pleased to have John joining iZumi Bio as CEO," explainedBeth Seidenberg M.D., a partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers andChairperson of iZumi Bio. "His considerable experience across a wide range ofcompanies, therapeutic areas and technologies, including human embryonic stemcells, will help accelerate the full realization of iZumi Bio's iPStechnology."
Walker received a B.A. from the State University of New York at Buffaloand is a graduate of the Advanced Executive Program, J. L. Kellogg GraduateSchool of Management at Northwestern University. He currently serves on theBoard of Directors of Affymax, Inc., Transcept Pharmaceuticals, Inc., andEvotec AG.
About iZumi Bio, Inc.
iZumi Bio, Inc. was founded in 2007 and is funded by Kleiner PerkinsCaufield and Byers and Highland Capital Partners. iZumi Bio is using thepower of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) to transform drug discovery andenable the promise of regenerative medicine. In June 2008, iZumi Bio announceda broad regenerative medicine and cardiovascular disease partnership with TheGladstone Institutes. The name iZumi, which in Japanese means "fountain ofyouth," was chosen to honor the Japanese origins of iPS technology. iZumi Biois located in the San Francisco Bay Area.
SOURCE iZumi Bio, Inc.