AMSTERDAM, May 7, 2015 /PRNewswire/ --
Kiadis Pharma B.V. ("Kiadis Pharma" or "the Company"), a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company developing innovative immunotherapy treatments, today announces the appointment of Dr. Vincent Brichard as an independent member of its Supervisory Board.
Dr. Brichard has more than 25 years' experience in the oncology and immunology field, including almost 15 years at GlaxoSmithKline ("GSK") where he was Senior Vice-President and had responsibility for the Immunotherapeutics Business Unit, which covered a broad, integrated approach to immunotherapy - from bench discovery through clinical development and operations to regulatory and commercial activities. In addition to this position, he served as a member of the Board of Directors at GSK Biologicals.
Dr. Brichard is a physician by training and holds a PhD in tumor immunology. He began his academic career at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, Brussels Branch, followed by positions at the Institut Curie Cancer Center, Paris, and at the University of Louvain, Brussels.
He further holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School.
Manfred Rüdiger, CEO of Kiadis Pharma, commented: "We are very pleased to have attracted someone of Dr. Brichard's caliber to the Board. His strong background and successful career in oncology and immunology will complement the Company's already strong team and network. We look forward to benefiting from his counsel."
Dr. Vincent Brichard commented: "With my background in oncology and immunology, my work has been focused since 1986 on the appealing project of educating our natural defenses - those that protect us from infectious diseases - to recognize and kill cancer cells. ATIR™ achieved some extremely compelling clinical data and the Phase II study interim analysis in December demonstrated the drug's true potential as an adjunctive life-saving therapy for blood cancer patients. I am looking forward to joining the Board and working with the team to develop ATIR™ to its full potential."
About Kiadis Pharma
Kiadis Pharma is a private clinical stage biopharmaceutical company focused on research, development and future commercialisation of cell-based immunotherapy products for the treatment of blood cancers and inherited blood disorders. The Company believes that its innovative products have the potential to address the current risks and limitations connected with allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Although currently not a viable option for many patients, HSCT is generally regarded as the most effective curative approach to blood cancers and inherited blood disorders. The Company expects that HSCT could become a first-choice treatment for blood cancers and inherited blood disorders once current risks and limitations are addressed, thereby meeting a significant unmet medical need with its products.
Currently ATIR™ is being tested in an open-label Phase II trial in patients with blood cancer who have not found a matching donor and where a partially matched (haploidentical) family member is used as donor for HSCT.
Kiadis Pharma is supported by a strong group of leading international investors including LSP, Alta Partners, DFJ Esprit, Quest for Growth, MedSciences Capital and NOM. Kiadis Pharma is based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Further information can be found at: http://www.kiadis.com.
During HSCT treatment the bone marrow, harbouring the diseased cells, is completely destroyed and subsequently replaced by stem cells from a healthy donor. After HSCT it usually takes at least six to twelve months to recover to nearly normal blood cell levels and immune cell functions in a patient that has received a transplant. During this period, the patient is highly susceptible and vulnerable to infections by bacteria, viruses and fungi. Immune cells in ATIR™ (Allodepleted T-cell ImmunotheRapeutics) will help fight these opportunistic infections until the immune system has fully re-grown from stem cells in the transplanted graft.
In ATIR™, T-cells that cause Graft-versus-Host-Disease (GVHD) are eliminated from the donor lymphocytes, avoiding the occurrence of this disease and any related morbidity and mortality. At the same time, ATIR™ contains potential cancer killing T-cells from the donor that could eliminate residual cancer cells and avoid the return of the disease.
The Company has estimated that currently approximately 35% of patients who are eligible for, and who are in urgent need of, HSCT will not find a matching donor in time whereas a partially matched (haploidenitcal) family donor will be available to over 95% of people. However, the use of haploidentical donor grafts is only feasible in conjunction with severe immune suppression which renders the patient highly vulnerable to infections.
ATIR™ allows the use of completely T-cell depleted haploidentical grafts eliminating the need for immune suppressive drugs and providing the patient with immune cells that will not cause GVHD. Thereby, ATIR™ solves the problem of not finding a matched donor in time and has the potential to make curative HSCT a viable option to many more patients.
Manfred Ruediger, CEO
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SOURCE Kiadis Pharma