AMSTERDAM, The Netherlands, December 6, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --
uniQure B.V., a leader in the field of human gene therapy, today announced the appointment of Hans Christian Rohde as Chief Commercial Officer.
Mr. Rohde joins uniQure from Basilea Pharmaceutica (SIX: BSLN) where from 2007 he was Chief Commercial Officer and member of the company's executive management committee with responsibility for global commercial operations, marketing, supply chain, medical affairs, pricing and market access.
"We are very pleased with Hans Christian's appointment," says Jörn Aldag, CEO of uniQure. "With the approval of Glybera we need to rapidly build and expand our commercial organization to enable the successful roll-out of Glybera and provide access to this crucial treatment to as many patients as possible. Hans Christian's experience and successful track-record in major biotechnology companies such as Basilea, Merck-Serono and Biogen Idec provide us with the necessary leadership qualities to successfully commercialize Glybera."
Hans Christian Rohde (M.Sc., MBA) has almost 25 years experience in commercial roles at leading biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. Prior to Basilea Pharmaceutica, Mr. Rohde was Corporate Vice President, Head of Global Therapeutic Areas Reproductive Health and Endocrinology at Merck-Serono from 2003 until 2007. Before this he was responsible for international marketing and global market development at Biogen Idec. From 1992 until 2000, Mr Rohde held positions of increasing commercial responsibility at Novo Nordisk. Mr. Rohde started his career at Laboratoires Syntex.
uniQure is a world leader in the development of human gene based therapies. uniQure's Glybera, a gene therapy for the treatment of lipoprotein lipase deficiency has been approved in the European Union, and is the first approved gene therapy in the Western world. uniQure's product pipeline of gene therapy products in development comprise hemophilia B, acute intermittent porphyria, Parkinson's disease and SanfilippoB. Using adeno-associated viral (AAV) derived vectors as the delivery vehicle of choice for therapeutic genes, the company has been able to design and validate probably the world's first stable and scalable AAV manufacturing platform. This proprietary platform can be applied to a large number of rare (orphan) diseases caused by one faulty gene. uniQure's largest shareholders are Forbion Capital Partners and Gilde Healthcare, two of the leading life sciences venture capital firms in the Netherlands. Further information can be found at http://www.uniqure.com.
uniQure has developed Glybera as a therapy for patients with the genetic disorder lipoprotein lipase deficiency, an orphan disease. The disease is caused by mutations in the LPL gene, resulting in highly decreased or absent activity of LPL enzyme in patients. This enzyme is needed in order to break down large fat-carrying particles that circulate in the blood after each meal. When such particles, called chylomicrons, accumulate in the blood, they may obstruct small blood vessels. Excess chylomicrons result in recurrent and severe acute inflammation of the pancreas, called pancreatitis, the most debilitating complication of LPLD. Glybera has orphan drug designation in the EU and US, and obtained marketing authorisation from the European Commission for commercialization in the 27 EU countries in November, 2012, making it the first gene therapy to win approval in the Western world.
SOURCE uniQure B.V.