Dr Birkhofer takes pivotal role in overseeing global clinical study programme
· Opening US office
Edinburgh, U.K., 22nd June 2015: NuCana, a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company using the proprietary ProTide technology to develop and commercialise a portfolio of novel anti-cancer medicines, today announced the appointment of Martin J Birkhofer, M.D. as Chief Medical Officer and the opening of a US office in Princeton, New Jersey.
Commenting on his appointment, Hugh Griffith, NuCana's Chief Executive Officer, said: "The appointment of a CMO with Marty's experience and calibre is a testament to the quality and ambition that we have at NuCana. We look forward to working with Marty and being able to benefit from his expertise as we develop and commercialise our ProTide technology to benefit many patients with cancer."
Dr Birkhofer said: "I am delighted to join the NuCana team as it enters into Phase III studies with its lead ProTide, Acelarin, and brings other ProTides into the clinic. I am convinced that NuCana's new medicines have the potential to provide important new treatment options in oncology."
Dr Birkhofer, an oncologist by training, joins NuCana from inVentiv Health Clinical, a leading global supplier of drug development services, where he led its global medical and scientific affairs and held the title of Chief Medical Officer. Between 1994 and 2013, he served in various leadership roles within Research and Development and Business Development at Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS), including Vice President, Search, Evaluation and Diligence, Vice President Oncology Global Medical Affairs, Vice President Product Development for Erbitux, Executive Director of Oncology Clinical Research Europe and Executive Director Clinical Pharmacology. He brings to NuCana, a broad drug development experience, and the knowhow of the evolving access, reimbursement and commercialisation environment for oncology products.
Dr Birkhofer is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Medical Oncology. He obtained his M.D. from New York Medical College in Valhalla, New York.
With the hiring of Dr Birkhofer, NuCana is also announcing the opening of its U.S. office in Princeton, New Jersey, which will establish a U.S. presence for the company and support NuCana's international clinical study programmes and other activities.
NuCana® is a rapidly growing, clinical stage biopharmaceutical company with a broad development portfolio of novel anti-cancer medicines. The Company's proprietary ProTide technology has the potential to set new benchmarks in efficacy and safety with its treatments that are specifically designed to overcome key cancer resistance mechanisms. Acelarin® is NuCana's lead medicine and was the first ProTide to enter the clinic in October 2010. Acelarin achieved exceptional levels of disease control in a broad range of patients with advanced, rapidly progressing solid tumours. Global Phase III studies with Acelarin are currently being planned in ovarian, biliary and pancreatic cancers. Privately held, NuCana, which raised $57 million in a Series B financing in April 2014, is backed by world-leading investors including Sofinnova Partners, Sofinnova Ventures, Morningside Ventures, Alida Capital International and the Scottish Investment Bank.
For more information, please visit: www.nucana.com
ProTides are first in class pre-activated anti-cancer agents, with a protective phosphoramidate group that allows the medicine to bypass the key tumour resistance mechanisms that limit the activity of many current chemotherapy drugs. Acelarin is the first ProTide in oncology to be brought to the clinic. The innovative ProTide chemistry is a technology platform that can be applied to all nucleoside analogues. Gilead's ProTide, Sovaldi®, has shown the potential of this new class of medicines for anti-viral therapy.
For more information, please contact
Hugh S. Griffith
Tel: +44 131 248 3660