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Afraxis Appoints Carmine Stengone President and Chief Executive Officer, and Christopher Rex, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer



 Afraxis Appoints Carmine Stengone President and Chief Executive Officer, and
               Christopher Rex, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer

New executive team will lead continued development and partnering of company's
Enhanced Spine Platform Technology for drug discovery in CNS disorders

PR Newswire

SAN DIEGO, April 29, 2013

SAN DIEGO, April 29, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Afraxis, Inc. today announced that
it has appointed Carmine Stengone as the company's president and chief
executive officer. The company has also appointed Christopher Rex, Ph.D. as
chief scientific officer.

In his previous role as vice president of corporate development for Afraxis
Holdings, Mr. Stengone led and executed a $187.5 million license agreement
with Roche's subsidiary, Genentech.  After the transaction, Mr. Stengone
helped establish Afraxis, Inc. as a spin-out from Afraxis Holdings.  Afraxis,
Inc. is a start-up company focusing on its novel Enhanced Spine Platform (ESP)
Technology which assesses complex neural networks to evaluate preclinical
efficacy and safety of drug candidates in central nervous system (CNS)
disorders. 

"Carmine is a rising young star in the life science industry with an
impressive track record in negotiating and executing on licensing deals and
alliances with major pharma partners, and using his experience, he will
generate a pipeline of lucrative collaborations with companies that want to
capitalize on Afraxis' ESP technology platform for their own drug discovery
efforts." said Jay Lichter, Ph.D., chairman of Afraxis, and managing partner
of Avalon Ventures. "Chris led the development of the ESP technology, and his
expertise in central nervous system biology will be integral to further
expanding the platform as a premiere preclinical drug discovery tool for
companies interested in developing treatments for CNS disorders."

Mr. Stengone, 37, has more than 14 years of experience in the pharmaceutical
and biotechnology industries, including positions in finance, strategic
planning, corporate development, licensing, alliance management and venture
funding. In addition to his role as CEO of Afraxis, Inc., Mr. Stengone also
serves as chief business officer for Avelas Biosciences, an Avalon Ventures
Portfolio VIII company. Prior to joining Afraxis, he was with Phenomix
Corporation from 2006 to 2010, where he was responsible for strategic
collaborations and licensing agreements. He was also a member of the Phenomix
executive management team as the senior director of business development. Mr.
Stengone served as senior manager of business development and strategic
marketing for Anadys Pharmaceuticals, Inc. from 2004 to 2006. Prior to that,
Mr. Stengone held a variety of positions at Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceutical
Research and Development.

Dr. Rex, 34, currently leads scientific operations at Afraxis Inc. and
oversees the development of the ESP platform and other technologies. Prior to
his appointment as chief scientific officer, he was a principle investigator
and director of R&D strategy for Afraxis Holdings from 2010-2013 during which
time he developed the foundations of the ESP program to rapidly evaluate drug
impact on the hallmark dendritic spine abnormalities in the Fmr1-knockout
mouse model of Fragile-X Syndrome. Dr. Rex trained in the neurobiology of
learning and memory at University of California, Irvine, where he contributed
over 20 scientific publications in top-tier neuroscience journals. Dr. Rex
combines his diverse aptitudes ranging from biophotonics to cognitive
enhancement to software design for virtual environments to inject innovations
into CNS drug discovery and development. Dr. Rex has received distinguished
honors including selection as a NIH Earl Stadtman Investigator Finalist and a
Kauffman Foundation Entrepreneurial Fellow.

About Afraxis, Inc.
Afraxis, Inc. is a San Diego-based drug discovery platform company recently
spun-out of Afraxis Holdings. The company is part of a growing wave of
innovative neuroscience that applies cutting-edge technical and computational
approaches to fundamental issues in brain science that promise to generate new
insights into CNS diseases. Afraxis develops and uses high-content central
nervous system (CNS) pharmaceutical screening technologies to evaluate
pre-clinical efficacy for potential treatments for neurological and
psychiatric disorders.  Afraxis developed the Enhanced Spine Platform (ESP)
Technology platform, which quantifies the morphology and maturity of synaptic
dendritic spines which are fundamental to information processing by neural
synapses in the brain. Abnormal dendritic spine quantity and morphology have
been associated with numerous CNS disorders, including schizophrenia,
Alzheimer's disease, Fragile X syndrome and autism. Afraxis has a strategic
alliance with PsychoGenics to offer its ESP Technology as part of
PsychoGenics' comprehensive testing capabilities and drug discovery science.

SOURCE Afraxis, Inc.

Contact: Heidi Chokeir, Ph.D., Canale Communications, heidi@canalecomm.com,
(619) 849-5377
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