OncoCyte Corporation, a cancer diagnostics company and a member of the BioTime, Inc. (NYSE: BTX) family of companies, announced today that William Annett, MBA has been appointed Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Annett succeeds Joseph Wagner, PhD, who spearheaded the early stages of clinical development of OncoCyte's product lines. With the departure of Dr. Wagner from the company and the board of Oncocyte, Mr. Annett will immediately take responsibility for leading the company through the later stages of clinical trials of OncoCyte's proprietary, non-invasive diagnostic tests for cancer. Mr. Annett also assumes immediate responsibility for the development and execution of the commercial strategy for OncoCyte's class of diagnostic tests. Having previously served as Chief Executive Officer of several companies, Mr. Annett brings to OncoCyte extensive experience within the biotechnology and diagnostics industry. In addition, Mr. Annett has held significant management positions at Genentech and Accenture and has worked on the clinical development and commercialization of a wide range of drugs and diagnostics.
"It is an exciting time to join OncoCyte and I am enthusiastic about the opportunity to lead the company through its commercialization phase," said Mr. Annett. "I will be working closely with the R&D team to complete the validation studies of our lung, bladder, and breast cancer diagnostics. Our energies will be increasingly directed towards expansion of the operational and commercial groups such that we can execute the most efficient and effective go-to-market strategies for these products. OncoCyte's novel technology has produced positive results in early clinical studies. We anticipate that the Company could set new standards for diagnostic products and procedures used to determine the presence or recurrence of lung, bladder, and breast cancers. I look forward to working with BioTime's management team and our Board to maximize the Company's opportunities."
"Bill's extensive leadership and entrepreneurial experience in the diagnostics industry and in product commercialization is an excellent fit for the OncoCyte organization, and the Board is confident that he is ideally suited to take OncoCyte to the next level," said Michael D. West, PhD, President and CEO of BioTime. "His role as an active OncoCyte Board member since January has provided him with a head start in understanding the company's strategy, capabilities, and direction, which will undoubtedly help him to quickly shoulder the CEO's responsibilities. His leadership will be critical as the OncoCyte team completes product development and shifts to commercializing products."
Mr. Annett's diagnostics industry experience includes his service as CEO at BioFX Laboratories, Inc., which created innovative products in the in vitro diagnostics field and was successfully sold to a large life sciences company. He founded and led Corra Life Sciences, a prenatal diagnostics company, which worked with a consortium of universities to develop blood tests for the major diseases of pregnancy. Early in his career, Mr. Annett also founded Western Canada Water, a consumer products company, which he led for six years as CEO; during his tenure, the company became publicly traded on NASDAQ and then was acquired by a U.S. beverage company.
At Genentech, Mr. Annett led the Commercial Strategy group and managed large projects with several hundred team members. He also directed the Project Finance function for R&D, which supported all development pipeline products with more than 200 clinical trials.
Most recently, Mr. Annett was a Managing Director at Accenture where he founded, built, and headed Accenture's West Coast Life Sciences practice with sales, marketing, and delivery responsibilities for the entire territory. His clients included most of the major biotech and pharmaceutical companies in the western United States.
Mr. Annett holds BA and MA degrees and an MBA from the Harvard Business School.