AVEO Pharmaceuticals Appoints John Ryan, Ph.D., M.D., As Chief Medical Officer

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AVEO Pharmaceuticals Appoints John Ryan, Ph.D., M.D., As Chief Medical Officer

- Dr. Ryan's Expertise in Translational Medicine a Key Addition as AVEO Moves its Portfolio of Novel Cancer Medicines Forward into the Clinic -

 

CAMBRIDGE, MA March 30, 2006 AVEO Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of novel cancer medicines, announced today that John L. Ryan, Ph.D., M.D., has joined the company as Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Ryan will be responsible for clinical strategy and development of AVEO’s pipeline, including AV-412, a novel dual kinase inhibitor, scheduled to enter the clinic by the middle of this year. Dr. Ryan brings almost 20 years of experience in drug discovery and development to AVEO, including expertise in translational medicine and cancer biology. He joins the company after 11 years at Wyeth where he most recently held the position of Senior Vice President of Translational Research. In 2001, he was appointed head of the new Department of Experimental Medicine, which was created to explore new technologies such as pharmacogenomics in exploratory clinical trials, to work closely with FDA on clinical pharmacogenomics, and to bridge discovery and development with the creation of new biomarkers. In 1998, he was promoted to Senior Vice President of Clinical Research & Development and assumed leadership of the Oncology and Infectious Disease therapeutic areas as well as the CR&D group. Dr. Ryan joined Genetics Institute, Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1995 as Vice President of Clinical Development and guided clinical programs that led to the licensure of products including Benefix, Neumega, and InductOs.   Prior to joining Genetics Institute, Dr. Ryan was an Executive Director of Clinical Research at Merck Research Laboratories.

 

Tuan Ha-Ngoc, President and CEO of AVEO, said, “We are very pleased that Dr. Ryan has joined AVEO at this critical juncture, as we move our first novel oncology product, AV-412, into the clinic.  His experience in this pioneering field of translational medicine fits perfectly with our vision of using insights gained through our Human Response Prediction platform to design clinical trials with a higher likelihood of success. John’s addition will allow us to aggressively move our internal portfolio forward, as well as to actively pursue our in-licensing strategy.”

 

Dr. Ryan added, “The year 2006 will be very exciting as AVEO brings its first product into the clinic. I look forward to utilizing my experience in translational medicine and cancer biology to help lead the development of AV-412.  It is the ideal time for me to join the AVEO team.”

 

Dr. Ryan received his Bachelors, Masters and Ph.D. degrees from Yale University. He received his M.D. from the University of California, San Diego and later returned to Yale to join the faculty of the Department of Internal Medicine.

 

About AV-412

AV-412 is a second generation oral, dual-kinase inhibitor that could potentially treat patients with solid tumors.  It has shown excellent activity in various xenograft models and has a toxicity profile similar to other molecules in its class.  Notably, in preclinical models, AV-412 is active against tumor cells that are resistant to first-generation kinase inhibitors.  AV-412’s mechanism of action has the potential to benefit patients with Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Metastatic Breast Cancer, Pancreatic Cancer, Head & Neck Cancer and Hormone Refractory Prostate Cancer.  AVEO’s Human Response Prediction platform offers an opportunity to exploit AV-412’s unique characteristics and will provide further insight into potential clinical settings, tumor subtypes and responsive patient populations.

 

About AVEO’s Human Response Prediction Platform

AVEO’s Human Response Prediction platform is based on AVEO’s proprietary, genetically-defined mouse models of human cancer.  Each of these models is engineered to contain signature genetic mutations that are present in human disease.  Beyond these cancer-initiating, engineered mutations, the resultant tumors acquire common and distinct spontaneous mutations during tumor progression, providing additional natural genetic variation akin to the range of genetic heterogeneity encountered across different primary human tumors.  The tumor-to-tumor genetic variation in the system provides the opportunity to identify genetic correlations between responding and non-responding tumor populations, and to apply such genetic profiles in clinical development.  Consequently, compared with traditional xenograft models that have proven to be non-predictive of efficacy, often leading to expensive and time-consuming hit or miss outcomes in clinical trials, AVEO’s cancer models are improved predictors of human response.  

 

About AVEO

AVEO is a private biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of novel cancer therapeutics. The Company utilizes its proprietary, genetically-defined cancer models for the identification and validation of novel cancer targets, and has begun to build an impressive portfolio of drug discovery programs around these high-value targets. AVEO also leverages its Human Response Prediction platform to allow for the identification of genetic profiles that correspond with patient responsiveness. AVEO is located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. For more information, please visit the company's website at www.aveopharma.com.