Personalized Medicine Pioneer K. Peter Hirth, Ph.D., Joins Denovo Biopharma Advisor Board
SAN DIEGO, November 3, 2014 – Denovo Biopharma, LLC, today announced that Dr. Peter Hirth, a pioneer in personalized medicine, has joined Denovo's advisory board.
Dr. Hirth has over 30 years of biotechnology and pharmaceutical discovery and development experience, and is a pioneer in advancing personalized medicine. He was a co-founder and CEO of Plexxikon where he built a novel, structure-guided drug discovery platform, which over the last ten years, has brought several NCEs into the clinic in a variety of indications. From this portfolio, a V600E B-raf selective inhibitor that was FDA approved for metastatic melanoma together with a companion diagnostic and is sold under the brand name Zelboraf™, one of the most recent success in biomarker guided drug development frequently cited as prime example of personalized medicine.
Previously, he was at Sugen, Inc. from 1991 until 2000 and helped build the company from its inception and advanced several kinase inhibitors through clinical trials in oncology. Sutent was the first Sugen product to reach the market in renal cell carcinoma. At Sugen, Dr. Hirth held several positions with increasing responsibilities, last as President. Prior to Sugen, Dr. Hirth was a vice president in research with Boehringer Mannheim where, among other responsibilities, he successfully led the company's erythropoietin program to approval in 1989, sold under the name Recormon. Before joining Boehringer Mannheim, Dr. Hirth was a research scientist with the Max Planck Institute, following the completion of his post doctoral work at the University of California , San Diego . Dr. Hirth received his Ph.D. in molecular genetics from Heidelberg University , Germany .
"We are delighted to have an industry leader like Dr. Hirth join Denovo.” said Xiangming Fang, M.D.,Ph.D., Denovo Biopharma's president. “Dr. Hirth's stellar track record in developing innovative medicines and unparalleled expertise in personalized medicine brings tremendous value to Denovo, which specializes in biomarker-guided drug development. In addition, Dr. Hirth's extensive experience in building startup biotech and operational expertise will aid Denovo growth and rapid advancement of its existing pipeline, which includes two late stage oncology drugs, including enzastaurin that was acquired in September from Eli Lilly. Dr. Hirth's breadth of knowledge and his network in the industry is also extremely valuable as we actively seek to acquire additional drugs in late-stage development and utilize our biomarker discovery platform to personalize and advance these treatments.”
"Denovo is an innovative personalized medicine company with a disruptive business model," said Dr. Hirth. "The company's unique biomarker platform allows it to discover novel biomarkers retrospectively initially from failed late-stage drugs. In future it is expected to use phase 2 data for stratification or enrichment in following phase 3 studies. Denovo's experienced management team has built an impressive portfolio over a short period of time. In addition, its deep expertise in personalized medicine will make it a leader in advancing companion diagnostic guided drugs. I look forward to working with the Denovo team to recover and develop more personalized drugs."
About Denovo Biopharma
Denovo Biopharma is a privately-held biotechnology company that provides novel and proprietary biomarker approaches to personalized drug development, including re-evaluating medicines that have failed in general patient populations ie. not stratified nor enriched by personalizing them for the original indication. The company offers the first platform and algorithm for de novo genomic biomarker discovery using archived clinical samples. This technology may be especially useful for compounds with suboptimal late-stage trial results. By identifying biomarkers correlated with patients' responses to drug candidates retrospectively, Denovo enables the design and execution of follow-on clinical trials in targeted patient populations while optimizing efficacy, safety and tolerability. For additional information please visit www.denovobiopharma.com.