STOCKHOLM, Oct. 20, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Wilson Therapeutics AB, a privately-held biopharmaceutical company, today announced that Andrew Kay has been appointed as Chairman of its Board of Directors. The company's previous Chairman, Hugh Rienhoff, M.D. will continue to advise the company as a consultant.
Mr. Kay has more than 30 years of commercial and leadership experience in the pharmaceutical sector and currently has advisor and chairman roles in the biotechnology industry. Most recently, he was CEO of Algeta, a publicly-traded oncology company. During his leadership, Algeta's lead product, Xofigo®, was approved by the Food and Drug Administration and the European Medicines Agency as a novel treatment for bone metastases in castration-resistant prostate cancer. In 2014, Algeta was acquired by its partner Bayer for $2.9 billion. Mr. Kay's previous roles include Global Head of Marketing and Sales at Novartis, VP Marketing US with Zeneca, as well as commercial positions in Europe with AstraZeneca, Eli Lilly, Sandoz and Boots. Mr. Kay has launched many blockbusters during his career.
"I am delighted to join Wilson during such an exciting time in the company's development," said Mr. Kay. "I look forward to adding my experience to help the team develop its lead product in Wilson's Disease, where there is a major opportunity and high medical need to improve efficacy, side effects and compliance problems seen with existing medications."
"We are delighted to welcome Andrew as Chairman," said Jonas Hansson, CEO of Wilson Therapeutics. "Andrew brings significant global biopharmaceutical expertise to Wilson, which will be highly valuable as the company progresses its development strategy. I would also like to thank Dr. Hugh Rienhoff for his service to the company since its inception. Dr. Rienhoff has been instrumental in the creation of the company and the progress of our programmes."
About Wilson's Disease
Wilson's Disease is a rare autosomal recessive disorder caused by mutations in the ATP7B gene, resulting in deficient production of the copper-transporter ATPase-2. Deficient or absent production of ATPase-2 leads to impaired incorporation of Cu into ceruloplasmin and impairment of biliary Cu excretion, which allows copper to accumulate in the body. The build-up of copper in liver, brain, kidneys and other tissues of Wilson's Disease patients produces significant organ damage and dysfunction. Untreated or inadequately treated Wilson's Disease can result in brain damage, liver failure and death. The overall prevalence of Wilson's Disease is estimated to be 1-2 in 30,000 individuals.
About Wilson Therapeutics
Wilson Therapeutics is a privately-held biopharmaceutical company focused on improving the lives of patients with Wilson's Disease through the development of new treatment options and increased awareness and education. The Company's lead product candidate, WTX101, is currently in clinical development as a treatment for Wilson's Disease. Investors include Abingworth, HealthCap, MVM Life Science Partners and NeoMed.
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SOURCE Wilson Therapeutics