BOSTON, Feb. 8, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Intarcia Therapeutics, Inc. today announced the appointment of John Yee, MD, MPH, into the newly created role of Vice President, Head of Global Medical Affairs, Safety and Operations. Dr. Yee has two decades of leadership experience at leading pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and health care companies, and at a major academic medical center. Most recently Dr. Yee served as VP, Head of Medical Affairs, US Diabetes, and VP, US Head Medical Officer at AstraZeneca, where he led medical affairs across all therapeutic areas, and led the medical launch of multiple cardiovascular and metabolic products, including: Bydureon® (exenatide extended-release) for injectable suspension, Farxiga® (dapagliflozin), Xigduo XR (dapagliflozin and metformin HCI extended release tablets), Myalept® (metreleptin) for injection, and Brilinta® (ticagrelor tablets). In his new role at Intarcia, Dr. Yee will be a member of the Leadership Team and an Executive Officer of the Company, and he will report directly to Kurt Graves, Chairman, President and CEO.
John Yee, MD, MPH, has been named the VP, Global Medical Affairs, Safety and Operations at Intarcia by Chairman and CEO Kurt Graves. The newly created position reports directly to the CEO, and is an Executive Officer of the Company.
"2016 is a year of dramatic growth and building new capabilities as we aim to file our first NDA and prepare for the launch of ITCA 650 in the second half of 2017. John is eminently qualified to fill this keystone position in Global Medical Affairs, Safety and Operations. I'm confident he will help us tremendously both with our near-term imperative to build out a fully integrated biopharmaceutical company, but also by materially impacting our future success by tangibly assisting us to build a pipeline of disruptively innovative medicines that leverage our technology platforms each having the potential to change the standard of care in its respective therapeutic area," said Kurt Graves. "John is also a great entrepreneurial force, making him an excellent fit with our vision, our purpose, and our core values. I'm very excited to welcome John to our rapidly growing team, where I know he will enjoy unleashing our talent and our novel medicines to make a real difference in the lives of millions of patients."
Commenting on his appointment, Dr. Yee said: "Throughout my career, I have been driven by a relentless desire to improve patient outcomes. While scientific advances in our understanding of chronic diseases have led to new treatment options, almost no meaningful progress has been made in helping patients address the fundamental challenge of medication adherence. Although chronic diseases are life-long, most patients stop taking their prescribed medications within 6-12 months. Intarcia has taken on this challenge by developing a truly disruptive and innovative platform for drug delivery. I'm excited to join this team of pioneers that aims to create a new treatment paradigm that goes beyond traditional pills and injections, and which has the potential to help patients live longer and healthier lives," said Dr. Yee.
In his career prior to AstraZeneca, Dr. Yee served in progressive leadership roles at Genzyme, including Global Medical Director; VP, US Medical Affairs; and VP, Global Medical Affairs for the company's rare genetic disease business and VP, Global Head, Evidence-Based Medicine across all therapeutic areas. Earlier in his career, Dr. Yee helped lead two health care start-up companies, and was recognized by Fast Company magazine's inaugural "Fast 50" list of "champions of innovation," and by Boston Business Journal's "40 Under 40" list of business leaders.
Prior to joining industry, Dr. Yee served as a faculty member and attending physician at Harvard Medical School and Boston Children's Hospital. He completed his residency training in pediatrics and fellowship training in immunology/rheumatology and health services research at Boston Children's Hospital. Dr. Yee earned his undergraduate degree from Harvard College, and completed his medical degree at Harvard Medical School, in addition to a master's degree in public health from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
About ITCA 650
ITCA 650 (continuous subcutaneous delivery of exenatide) is being developed for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. The investigational therapy employs Intarcia's proprietary technology platform, a matchstick-size, miniature osmotic pump that is placed sub-dermally to provide continuous and consistent drug therapy, and the company's proprietary formulation technology, which maintains stability of therapeutic peptides above human body temperature for extended periods of time. Exenatide, the active agent in ITCA 650, is a glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist that is currently marketed globally as twice-daily and once-weekly self-injection therapies for type 2 diabetes. When approved, ITCA 650 will be the first injection-free GLP-1 therapy that can deliver up to a full year of treatment from a single placement of the osmotic mini-pump. ITCA 650 is currently being evaluated in the FREEDOM global Phase 3 clinical trial program. The first three FREEDOM trials have successfully completed, the latest, FREEDOM 2, demonstrated head-to-head superiority in glucose control after 52 weeks over the market-leading oral therapy, Januvia® (sitagliptin). The FREEDOM CVO trial began close out procedures in 4Q15 after reaching the target number of major cardiovascular events. Intarcia expects to have top-line results for FREEDOM CVO in 2Q 2016.
About Intarcia Therapeutics, Inc.
Intarcia Therapeutics, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company developing therapies to enhance treatment outcomes by optimizing and improving the efficacy, continuous administration and tolerability of drug therapies. In addition, delivering medicines just once or twice yearly has the potential to ensure improved patient adherence and compliance, which is very poor in most chronic diseases. Intarcia's drug development expertise and competitive edge are demonstrated by its abilities to stabilize proteins and peptides at above-body temperature and to deliver them in a constant and consistent manner via Intarcia's proprietary technology platform. Intarcia is conducting a Phase 3-stage development program for type 2 diabetes that consists of four separate clinical trials, three of which have been completed. Intarcia continues to conduct research and development, utilizing its platform technology, to treat other chronic serious disorders in the field of diabetes and obesity. For more information on the Company, please visit www.intarcia.com.
Intarcia and its logo are registered trademarks of Intarcia Therapeutics, Inc.