Amakem Appoints Jean Marie Stassen as Vice President, Research and Development
DIEPENBEEK, Belgium, September 3, 2013
DIEPENBEEK, Belgium, September 3, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --
Amakem NV, a clinical stage ophthalmology company, today announces that Dr.
Jean Marie Stassen has been appointed as Vice President, Research and
Most recently Dr. Stassen was Head of Research & Development at Thrombogenics
NV where he played a pivotal role in the successful development of
ThromboGenics' lead product, ocriplasmin(JETREA ^® ), from early pre-clinical
through to regulatory submission. He joined ThromboGenics in 2001 and remained
with the Company until retiring in 2012.
Prior to ThromboGenics, Dr. Stassen served as a Research Project Leader for
the cardiovascular therapeutic area at Boehringer Ingelheim Pharma, including
work leading to the discovery of dabigatran (Pradaxa ^® ) and the registration
of tenecteplase (TNKase ^® ). Prior to moving into the pharmaceutical
industry, he spent 20 years at KU Leuven working on the characterization of
tPA (Alteplase ^® ) and staphylokinase as well as on research involving
anti-thrombotic and thrombolytic therapy.
Dr. Stassen is co-founder of FlandersBio, the umbrella organisation for the
Life Sciences and Biotechnology sector in Flanders, and was a board member of
the Center for Medical Innovation (CMI). He has authored/co-authored more than
100 papers in peer-reviewed journals, and more than 250 patents and patent
applications. He received his Doctoral Degree in Medical Sciences from the
University of Umeå in Sweden.
Amakem further announces that Dr. Dirk Leysen, co-founder of Amakem, will step
down from his role as Chief Scientific Officer. Dr. Leysen will continue to be
involved with Amakem through his position on the Board as a Director.
Dr. Jack Elands, CEO of Amakem, said: "I am delighted to welcome Jean Marie to
Amakem where his vast experience in product and corporate development in the
ophthalmology space will prove to be a tremendous asset to the Company as we
continue to progress our lead product AMA0076 for the treatment of glaucoma.
"I also wish to thank Dirk for his enormous contribution to Amakem as a
founder of the Company, Chief Scientific Officer and inventor of our Localized
Drug Action technology."
Dr. Stassen said: "I am very excited to be joining Amakem and to be working
with the team to drive forward the development of AMA0076 and other innovative
products in ophthalmology. Seeing ocriplasmin go from the laboratory through
to the market was enormously satisfying, and I look forward to bringing that
experience to bear at Amakem."
Amakem is an ophthalmology company developing new treatments for serious eye
conditions. Amakem's product pipeline is based on its unique Localized Drug
Action platform which is designed to generate safe and effective novel kinase
inhibitors that minimize systemic exposure with the aim of reducing side
Amakem's lead candidate, AMA0076, is for glaucoma and entered Phase 2a
development late last year. The Company is also working to apply the Localized
Drug Action approach to a range of other eye diseases.
Founded in 2010, Amakem has raised more than €21m in funding and is backed by
leading life sciences investors including Forbion, Omnes Capital (previously
Crédit Agricole), Vesalius BioCapital, LRM, PMV/Vinnof and Life Science
Amakem is based in Belgium and located in the life sciences incubator
"BioVille" at the University of Hasselt. The Company has a long-standing
collaboration with Professor Ingeborg Stalmans at the Ophthalmology Research
Center of the University Leuven Hospital, where it sponsors a Chair in
Ophthalmology Translational Research.
For more information, please contact:
Amakem NV Jack Elands, CEO firstname.lastname@example.org +32(0)474-828-580 Citigate
Dewe Rogerson Chris Gardner email@example.com +44(0)20-7638-9571
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