Amsterdam – Amsterdam Molecular Therapeutics (Euronext: AMT), a leader in the field of human gene therapy, announced today a number of management changes. Piers Morgan (age 43) has been appointed Chief Financial Officer, effective December 1, 2009. Hans Preusting, PhD (age 47), Director Process Development & Manufacturing, will take up the responsibility for Operations and Project Management, also effective December 1. These changes reflect the refocused strategy of the company announced in the third quarter update on 18 November 2009.
In addition to the anticipated filing for regulatory approval of its lead product Glybera®, a gene therapy product to control LipoProtein Lipase Deficiency (LPLD), AMT is focusing on accelerating the development of 4 of its pipeline products, using its stable and scalable AAV (adeno-associated viral vector) production platform. These projects are Hemophilia B, Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, Acute Intermittent Porphyria and Parkinson’s Disease. Furthermore AMT is implementing a business model combining proprietary and partnered development of these products in order to retain value and conserve cash.
Piers Morgan is a University of Cambridge graduate (MA in Law and Management Studies), who received his ACA Qualification while at PriceWaterhouseCoopers, and who worked in M&A advisory with Close Brothers Corporate Finance and Ernst & Young before starting his career in biotechnology. He was Finance Director for Arrow Therapeutics where he successfully raised equity and debt capital, became CFO of BioAlliance Pharma SA in Paris, France, where he led the company’s IPO on Euronext, and recently was CFO and CBO at Phytopharm plc in the UK. He will succeed André Verwei, who was as AMT’s CFO as from 2005.
Before joining AMT in 2006, Hans Preusting had more than 14 years of experience in the production process of biologicals at Gist-Brocades, DSM Biologics and Solvay Pharmaceuticals. He will take up the operational responsibilities of Dr Anthony Gringeri, who resigned from the position of Chief Operating Officer to return to his home country, the United States.
Jörn Aldag, Chief Executive Officer of AMT, comments:
“I am very pleased that Piers Morgan is joining our management team. Piers has a successful history as CFO in private and public biotechnology firms. He worked for 10 years in M&A advisory and started his career in one of the big accounting firms. Hans Preusting has been instrumental in establishing AMT’s leading position in gene therapy, in particular its unique manufacturing capabilities and in progressing AMT’s lead product Glybera to filing. With these management changes we now have the team in place to take the company to a successful future. I wish to thank Anthony Gringeri and André Verwei for their numerous valuable contributions to the growth of AMT over the previous years.”
About Amsterdam Molecular Therapeutics
AMT, founded in 1998 and based in Amsterdam, is a leader in the development of human gene based therapies. Using adeno-associated viral (AAV) vectors as the delivery vehicle of choice for therapeutic genes, the company has been able to design and validate what is probably the first stable and scalable AAV production platform. This safe and efficacious proprietary platform offers a unique manufacturing capability which can be applied to a large number of rare (orphan) diseases that are caused by one faulty gene. Currently, AMT has a product pipeline with several AAV-based gene therapy products in LPL Deficiency, Hemophilia B, Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, Acute Intermittent Porphyria and Parkinson’s Disease at different stages of research or development.
Chief Executive Officer
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Certain statements in this press release are “forward-looking statements” including those that refer to management's plans and expectations for future operations, prospects and financial condition. Words such as “strategy,” “expects,” “plans,” “anticipates,” “believes,” “will,” “continues,” “estimates,” “intends,” “projects,” “goals,” “targets” and other words of similar meaning are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. Such statements are based on the current expectations of the management of Amsterdam Molecular Therapeutics only. Undue reliance should not be placed on these statements because, by their nature, they are subject to known and unknown risks and can be affected by factors that are beyond the control of AMT. Actual results could differ materially from current expectations due to a number of factors and uncertainties affecting AMT’s business, including, but not limited to, the timely commencement and success of AMT’s clinical trials and research endeavors, delays in receiving U.S. Food and Drug Administration or other regulatory approvals (i.e. EMEA, Health Canada), market acceptance of AMT’s products, effectiveness of AMT’s marketing and sales efforts, development of competing therapies and/or technologies, the terms of any future strategic alliances, the need for additional capital, the inability to obtain, or meet, conditions imposed for required governmental and regulatory approvals and consents. AMT expressly disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements except as required by law. For a more detailed description of the risk factors and uncertainties affecting AMT, refer to the prospectus of AMT’s initial public offering on June 20, 2007, and AMT’s public announcements made from time to time.