Regulus Therapeutics Appoints Zachary A. Zimmerman, Ph.D., Director of Business Development
CARLSBAD, Calif., Jan 11, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Regulus Therapeutics Inc., a company developing microRNA therapeutics, today announced the appointment of Zachary A. Zimmerman, Ph.D., as director of business development. Dr. Zimmerman will be responsible for business development and licensing, as well as managing external collaborations and communications.
"We are very pleased to welcome Dr. Zimmerman to Regulus as he has a combination of science and business skills that will complement our team," said Garry E. Menzel, Ph.D., executive vice president of corporate development and finance. "The addition of key hires such as Dr. Zimmerman is critical to managing our external relationships as Regulus matures as a company in the growing field microRNA therapeutics."
"I am inspired to join such an innovative company on the cutting-edge of science and medicine," said Dr. Zimmerman. "Regulus scientists and the seasoned business team are building a significant company, and it is a great opportunity to play a part in a company leading in the development of high-impact medicines based on microRNA."
Prior to joining Regulus, Dr. Zimmerman spent 5 years in the business development group at Alnylam Pharmaceuticals and was primarily responsible for government affairs, external alliances and developing new business partnerships. Before Alnylam he was a senior research analyst for IDC's Life Sciences practice with a focus on disruptive technologies. Prior to IDC, Dr. Zimmerman was a lead scientist at 454 Life Sciences, where he contributed to the first successful sequencing of an entire viral genome using the company's unique DNA sequencing platform.
Dr. Zimmerman is trained in cell biology with expertise in genetics and protein biochemistry. He was a post-doctoral fellow at the Stanford University School of Medicine. He earned his Ph.D. in molecular, cellular and developmental biology at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Other previous experience includes research at The Scripps Research Institute and sales and marketing at Mediatech, Inc.
The discovery of microRNA in humans is one of the most exciting scientific breakthroughs in the last decade. microRNAs are small RNA molecules, typically 20 to 25 nucleotides in length that do not encode proteins but instead regulate gene expression. Nearly 700 microRNAs have been identified in the human genome, and more than one-third of all human genes are believed to be regulated by microRNAs. As a single microRNA can regulate entire networks of genes, these new molecules are considered the master regulators of the genome. microRNAs have been shown to play an integral role in numerous biological processes including the immune response, cell-cycle control, metabolism, viral replication, stem cell differentiation and human development. Many microRNAs are conserved across multiple species indicating the evolutionary importance of these molecules as modulators of critical biological pathways. Indeed, microRNA expression or function has been shown to be significantly altered in many disease states, including cancer, heart failure and viral infections. Targeting microRNAs opens the possibility of a novel class of therapeutics and a unique approach to treating disease by modulating entire biological pathways.
About Regulus Therapeutics Inc.
Regulus Therapeutics is a biopharmaceutical company leading the discovery and development of innovative new medicines based on microRNAs. Regulus is targeting microRNAs as a new class of therapeutics by working with a broad network of academic collaborators and leveraging oligonucleotide drug discovery and development expertise from its founding companies Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:ALNY) and Isis Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:ISIS). Regulus is advancing microRNA therapeutics towards the clinic in several areas including hepatitis C infection, cardiovascular disease, fibrosis, oncology, immuno-inflammatory diseases, and metabolic diseases. Regulus intellectual property estate contains both the fundamental and core patents in the field as well as over 600 patents and more than 300 pending patent applications pertaining primarily to chemical modifications of oligonucleotides targeting microRNAs for therapeutic applications. In 2008, Regulus entered into a major alliance with GlaxoSmithKline to discover and develop microRNA therapeutics for immuno-inflammatory diseases. For more information, visit www.regulusrx.com.
This press release includes forward-looking statements regarding the future therapeutic and commercial potential of Regulus', Alnylam's, and Isis' business plans, technologies and intellectual property related to microRNA therapeutics being discovered and developed by Regulus. Any statement describing Regulus', Alnylam's, and Isis' goals, expectations, financial or other projections, intentions or beliefs is a forward-looking statement and should be considered an at-risk statement, including those statements that are described as such parties' goals. Such statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties, particularly those inherent in the process of discovering, developing and commercializing drugs that are safe and effective for use as human therapeutics, and in the endeavor of building a business around such products. Such parties' forward-looking statements also involve assumptions that, if they never materialize or prove correct, could cause their results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Although these forward-looking statements reflect the good faith judgment of the management of each such party, these statements are based only on facts and factors currently known by Regulus', Alnylam's, and Isis' as the case may be. As a result, you are cautioned not to rely on these forward-looking statements. These and other risks concerning Regulus', Alnylam's, and Isis' programs are described in additional detail in Alnylam's and Isis' annual reports on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2008, and their most recent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q which are on file with the SEC. Copies of these and other documents are available from Alnylam or Isis.