OXFORD, England, Sept. 11, 2012 /CNW/ - Circassia Ltd, a specialty biopharmaceutical company focused on allergy, today announced the appointment of Dr Brett Haumann as Chief Medical Officer. Dr Haumann joins Circassia from GlaxoSmithKline where he was Vice President and Medicines Development Leader responsible for the late-stage development of once-daily inhaled medicines for the treatment of asthma and COPD.
"I am delighted Brett has chosen to join Circassia, where his extensive regulatory, medical and development experience will prove invaluable as we move our lead product into the final phase of clinical testing," said Steve Harris, Circassia's CEO. "With his expertise in respiratory medicine, wide network of opinion leadercontacts and proven track record in managing complex phase III studies, Brett is the ideal person to help Circassia drive its first product to market. We are confident our ToleroMune® technology has the potential to revolutionise allergy treatment, and the leadership Brett has already demonstrated in managing one of GSK's most important development programmes willhelp Circassia make thisambitious goal a reality."
Dr Brett Haumann has over 15 years' experience of pharmaceutical development gained at Glaxo Wellcome and GlaxoSmithKline. During this time, he held a number of positions of increasing seniority, culminating in his most recent role as Vice President, Medicines Development Leader where he led a multifunctional team developing GSK's next generation of inhaled respiratory products. Dr Haumann brings to Circassia extensive experience of leading global phase III development programmes, managing interactions with regulatory agencies and scientific opinion leaders, and co-ordinating market access and commercial activities. Prior to his time in the pharmaceutical industry, Dr Haumann practised internal medicine and conducted clinical research in South Africa. He gained his medical degree at the University of Witwatersrand, South Africa and also holds an MBA from the UK's Open University.
About Circassia's ToleroMune® allergy treatments
Circassia is developing a range of allergy treatments based on its proprietary ToleroMune® technology. This uses small sections of allergens (epitopes) to generate regulatory T cells that suppress allergic responses and create immune tolerance in patients. The company has successfully completed a number of phase II studies with its cat, house dust mite, ragweed and grass allergy therapies. Clinical results show that short courses of Circassia's allergy treatments can greatly reduce patients' allergic responses, without the need for adjuvants or other immune stimulators, while proving extremely well tolerated. As a result, the treatments offer major potential clinical benefits compared with existing therapies, and have significant market opportunities. More than 150 million people suffer from allergic rhinitis in the US and Europe, and the current treatment market is valued at approximately $12 billion per year.
Circassia was founded in 2006 by a team of highly experienced biotechnology scientists and entrepreneurs, and is chaired by the former Chairman of GlaxoSmithKline, Sir Richard Sykes. The company is based in the UK on the Oxford Science Park, and its joint venture with McMaster University (Adiga Life Sciences Inc) is located in Hamilton, Canada. Circassia's ToleroMune technology was developed originally by scientists at Imperial College, London. Having successfully completed five fundraising rounds, Circassia has raised approximately £105 million ($178 million) and is backed by a syndicate of world-class institutional investors, including Imperial Innovations and Invesco Perpetual.
SOURCE: Circassia Ltd
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