MORRIS PLAINS, N.J., Jan. 6, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Immunomedics, Inc., (Nasdaq:IMMU) today announced the appointment of Francois E. Wilhelm, M.D., Ph.D., as Chief Medical Officer of the Company. Dr. Wilhelm is a seasoned R&D Senior Executive with significant experience in Oncology and Rheumatology in both the United States and Europe.
"Francois is an industry veteran with 29 years of global clinical experience in large, multinational pharmaceutical companies and small biotech enterprises alike. He brings a significant track record of IND and NDA submissions for oncology and rheumatology agents," remarked Cynthia L. Sullivan, President and Chief Executive Officer. "We welcome Francois and look forward to his contributions as our robust clinical pipeline continues to mature," added Ms. Sullivan.
Dr. Wilhelm most recently served as Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President at Onconova Therapeutics, Inc. Previously, Dr. Wilhelm led clinical development programs at Fujisawa, Pfizer, Procter & Gamble, Akros Pharma, and Johnson and Johnson in the United States, as well as Hoffmann-La Roche in Europe. Dr. Wilhelm is Board Certified in Rheumatology and received his M.D. from the University of Paris, France, where he also earned a Ph.D. in Endocrinology and a Master degree in Biostatistics. Dr. Wilhelm has presented at leading medical conferences and published extensively in major peer-reviewed journals.
"With our expanding advanced trials in oncology with antibody-drug conjugates, as well as our ongoing Phase 3 trial in patients with advanced pancreatic cancer, Dr. Wilhelm will be able to relieve Dr. Goldenberg, who has served as both Chief Scientific Officer and Chief Medical Officer, of many of these responsibilities, so that Dr. Goldenberg can focus on preclinical science and early clinical trials," Ms. Sullivan explained.
Immunomedics is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing monoclonal antibody-based products for the targeted treatment of cancer, autoimmune disorders and other serious diseases. Immunomedics' advanced proprietary technologies allow the Company to create humanized antibodies that can be used either alone in unlabeled or "naked" form, or conjugated with radioactive isotopes, chemotherapeutics, cytokines or toxins. Using these technologies, Immunomedics has built a pipeline of nine clinical-stage product candidates. Immunomedics has an ongoing collaboration with UCB, S.A. (UCB), to whom the Company licensed epratuzumab for the treatment of all non-cancer indications worldwide. UCB expects Phase 3 data in systemic lupus erythematosus in the first half of 2015. Immunomedics is exploring epratuzumab in oncology in collaboration with independent cancer study groups. Immunomedics' most advanced candidate to which it retains worldwide rights for all indications is 90Y-clivatuzumab tetraxetan. The Company initiated a Phase 3 registration trial in January 2014 in patients with advanced pancreatic cancer and expects topline data in mid-2016. Immunomedics' portfolio of wholly owned product candidates also includes antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) that are designed to deliver a specific payload of a chemotherapeutic directly to the tumor while reducing overall toxic effects that are usually found with conventional administration of these chemotherapeutic agents. Immunomedics' most advanced ADCs are sacituzumab govitecan (IMMU-132) and labetuzumab govitecan (IMMU-130), which are in Phase 2 trials for a number of solid tumors and metastatic colorectal cancer, respectively. Immunomedics also has a number of other product candidates that target solid tumors and hematologic malignancies, as well as other diseases, in various stages of clinical and pre-clinical development. These include bispecific antibodies targeting cancers and infectious diseases as T-cell redirecting immunotherapies, as well as bispecific antibodies for next-generation cancer and autoimmune disease therapies, created using its patented DOCK-AND-LOCK® protein conjugation technology. The Company believes that its portfolio of intellectual property, which includes approximately 261 active patents in the United States and more than 400 foreign patents, protects its product candidates and technologies. Immunomedics' strength in intellectual property has resulted in a top-8 ranking in the Biotechnology industry by the Patent Board for the 2014 fiscal year. For additional information on the Company, please visit its website at www.immunomedics.com. The information on its website does not, however, form a part of this press release.
This release, in addition to historical information, may contain forward-looking statements made pursuant to the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements, including statements regarding clinical trials (including the funding therefor, outcomes, timing or associated costs), out-licensing arrangements (including the timing and amount of contingent payments), forecasts of future operating results, potential collaborations, and capital raising activities, involve significant risks and uncertainties and actual results could differ materially from those expressed or implied herein. Factors that could cause such differences include, but are not limited to, availability of required financing and other sources of funds on acceptable terms, if at all, new product development (including clinical trials outcome and regulatory requirements/actions), our dependence on UCB for the further development of epratuzumab for non-cancer indications, risks associated with the outcome of pending litigation and competitive risks to marketed products, as well as the risks discussed in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company is not under any obligation, and the Company expressly disclaims any obligation, to update or alter any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
CONTACT: For More Information: Dr. Chau Cheng Corporate Secretary (973) 605-8200, extension 123 [email protected]