- Also Appoints New Members to Executive Management Team -
LEXINGTON, MA - June 24, 2003 - Synta Pharmaceuticals Corp. today announced the appointment of Robert N. Wilson to its board of directors, effective June 17. Synta also announced the recent appointments of three members to its executive management team.
Robert N. Wilson recently retired from his position as Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of Johnson & Johnson, the international health care company, after a 38 year career. Mr. Wilson currently serves on the boards of the Charles Schwab Corporation, U.S. Trust Corporation, and Amerada Hess Corporation. Mr. Wilson was past chairman of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America and the Healthcare Institute of New Jersey.
"I am pleased to join the Synta Board," stated Mr. Wilson. "Synta has a strong financial position and has high scientific and medical standards. This solid foundation has resulted in several promising early pipeline leads."
Separately, Synta announced the recent appointments of James Barsoum, Ph.D., as Vice President, Biology; Wendy Rieder, Esq., as Vice President, Intellectual Property and Legal Affairs; and Michael D. Rivard, as Vice President, Business Development.
James Barsoum, Ph.D. joins Synta from Biogen where he most recently served as the Director of Molecular and Cellular Biology. At Biogen, Dr. Barsoum directed protein, small molecule, and gene therapy research programs in cancer, inflammation/fibrosis, and neurodegeneration. He also developed and supervised Biogen's interferon-ß gene therapy cancer program from preclinical to clinical development. Dr. Barsoum has authored 45 scientific publications and has over 18 U.S. patents. He received a Ph.D. in Biology from MIT, and has held research fellowships at Stanford University and the Whitehead Institute at MIT.
Wendy Rieder, Esq. was previously the co-founder, COO, and VP Business Development and Intellectual Property of Microbiotix, Inc., a privately-held biotechnology company developing small-molecule anti-infectives. She is a registered patent attorney with experience in all aspects of business and intellectual property law relating to private and public companies in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. Ms. Rieder was also the VP, Business Development and Intellectual Property at CereMedix, Inc. and LipoGenics, Inc., and a patent attorney at Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals and Fish & Neave. Ms. Rieder holds an M.S. in Organic Chemistry from Columbia University and a J.D. from Fordham University.
Michael D. Rivard was previously Vice President, Strategic Development at ArQule, Inc., responsible for technology and product acquisition. Prior to that position, Mr. Rivard served as Vice President and General Counsel of ArQule. Mr. Rivard also worked as associate counsel (intellectual property) for the University of Massachusetts System and as an associate at the law firm of Palmer & Dodge LLP. Mr. Rivard holds a bachelors degree in biochemistry from Bowdoin College and a J.D. from the UCLA School of Law.
"We are honored to be the first emerging pharmaceutical company for which Mr. Wilson has accepted a position on the board of directors," stated Safi Bahcall, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of Synta. "His tremendous knowledge and experience in the pharmaceutical industry, and the high regard in which he is held by our community, will be invaluable to Synta as we pursue our goal of becoming a fully-integrated pharmaceutical company. In addition, I am delighted that Synta has been able to attract such high-caliber and experienced executives as Dr. Barsoum, Ms. Rieder and Mr. Rivard. They broaden and complement the strengths of our existing management team, as well as demonstrate Synta's continuing ability to attract the best people."
About Synta Pharmaceuticals
Synta Pharmaceuticals is an emerging pharmaceutical company with a rich product pipeline, a track record of rapid innovation, and a high-throughput chemical biology platform for accelerating drug discovery and development. High-throughput chemical biology is the process of rapidly generating promising new drug candidates through tightly integrated cycles of chemistry-driven discovery and biology-driven validation. The Company is focused on cancer and immune disorders and has three drug candidates in preclinical or clinical development, and an additional five programs in late-stage research. For more information, please see www.syntapharma.com.