LEXINGTON, Mass., January 5, 2015 – Alzheon, Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on brain health, memory and aging, announced today that David Nikodem, Ph.D., has joined its Board of Directors. Dr. Nikodem is a senior representative of the global healthcare-focused investment firm Ally Bridge Group.
“David brings a wealth of public markets experience, and I am delighted to welcome him to our Board. Adding an influential global healthcare investment group, like Ally Bridge, to our investor base represents an important milestone for Alzheon and will help us rapidly progress ALZ-801, one of only a handful of innovative drug candidates with the potential to reach Alzheimer’s disease patients in the next few years,” said Martin Tolar, M.D., Ph.D., Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of Alzheon. “We are committed to establishing Alzheon as a leader in the development of new treatments for neurodegenerative diseases, beginning with the compelling opportunity to advance ALZ-801 in Alzheimer’s disease, while also pursuing other neuropsychiatric indications for ALZ-801 and other promising candidates in our portfolio.”
Alzheon’s lead clinical program, ALZ-801, is a novel small molecule inhibitor of neurotoxicity and amyloid aggregation with potential as a first-in-class therapy for a genetically defined population of patients with or at high risk for Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheon plans to initiate a potential pivotal clinical trial of ALZ-801 in late 2015.
Dr. Nikodem adds to the substantial breadth of accomplished drug development and industry leadership represented on Alzheon’s Board of Directors, which includes Menghis Bairu, M.D., Franklin Berger, Franz Hefti, Ph.D., Scott Minick, Jean-Pierre Sommadossi, Ph.D., and Dr. Tolar.
“Alzheon has made a significant progress in a short time advancing ALZ-801 to a confirmatory clinical study in Alzheimer’s disease and offering the prospect of a transformational treatment to patients with Alzheimer’s disease in the near future,” commented Dr. Nikodem. “We have strong confidence in the track record of the Board of Directors, the high caliber management team, and the rigorous science and clinical data that supports the ALZ-801 program. We particularly like the focus on the ApoE4 genetic biomarker to target a high-risk Alzheimer’s disease subpopulation, which we believe considerably improves the prospects for clinical success.”
Dr. Nikodem plays an active role in Ally Bridge Group’s portfolio companies and serves on the Board of Directors of Cold Genesys, Inc. For nearly 15 years, he has been dedicated to healthcare investing on the senior level at prominent firms. Most recently, from 2010 to 2013, Dr. Nikodem served as a Portfolio Manager at Exane Asset Management in Paris, where he managed Exane Equinox, a global healthcare investment fund. Prior to Exane, Dr. Nikodem was a Director on the long/short proprietary trading desk at BNP Paribas in New York, where in addition to covering biotechnology and pharmaceutical stocks, he was responsible for all subsectors of the healthcare markets. Dr. Nikodem began his focus on health care investing in 2000 as a Senior Analyst specializing in the health sector at Orbitex Management, followed by analyst roles at Acacia Research Investment Corporation, and Blumberg Capital Management. Dr. Nikodem started his career as a research scientist in chemistry and biology at the National Institutes of Health and as a patent examiner at the United States Patent and Trademark Office in Washington, DC. Dr. Nikodem holds a Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Georgetown University.
About Alzheon Alzheon, Inc. is committed to developing innovative medicines for patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and other neurological and psychiatric disorders. Our lead clinical candidate, ALZ‐801, is a first in‐class, oral inhibitor of amyloid aggregation and neurotoxicity – hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease. ALZ‐801 is an optimized, novel prodrug that builds on the established safety and efficacy profile of the active compound in clinical trials of more than 2,000 patients. Our mission is to apply our discovery platform and development experience to unlock new classes of therapeutics that make a difference in patients’ lives by directly addressing the underlying pathology of devastating neurodegenerative disorders.
About Ally Bridge Group
Ally Bridge Group, founded and led by Frank Yu, is a global healthcare-focused investment platform with bases in Hong Kong and the United States. Ally Bridge Group and its affiliates manage over $700 million in assets in the United States, China and Europe, and have expertise in cementing strategic partnerships between emerging healthcare companies and industry leaders, and across different geographies, especially between the United States and China.
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