NEW YORK, Jan. 28, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- NeoStem, Inc. (Nasdaq:NBS) ("NeoStem" or the "Company"), a leader in the emerging cellular therapy industry, announced today the appointment of Dr. David Altarac as Vice President, Regulatory Affairs. In this position, Dr. Altarac will lead NeoStem's regulatory affairs operations as it grows in connection with the Company's therapeutic pipeline expansion in 2014 and beyond.
NeoStem is pursuing the preservation and enhancement of human health globally through the development of cell based therapeutics that prevent, treat or cure disease by replacing and repairing damaged tissue, cells and organs and restoring their functionality to normal. The development of novel and proprietary cell therapy products is built around a robust intellectual property portfolio, and also utilizes the deep experience as well as engineering and innovation solutions of NeoStem's subsidiary, Progenitor Cell Therapy ("PCT"), a premier contract development and manufacturing organization that is a pioneer in the cell therapy industry, NeoStem continues to expand its clinical team. In August, Dr. Douglas W. Losordo, a leader in cell therapy and a cardiologist regarded for his career-long efforts to develop novel therapeutics, joined the Company as its Chief Medical Officer. As Vice President, Clinical Development and New Technologies, Dr. Jonathan Sackner-Bernstein will continue to oversee the Company's clinical development programs and his role will expand to include evaluation of opportunities to acquire or develop new technologies.
"Dr. Altarac brings to the Company an impressive resume of experience in U.S. and global regulatory affairs, operations, labeling and organizational design and we are thrilled to have his expertise as we expand our clinical development team," commented Dr. Douglas Losordo.
Dr. Altarac comes to NeoStem after a successful 13 year tenure at Merck and Company, Inc. where he most recently held the position of Vice President, Regulatory Affairs Emerging Markets R & D at Merck Research Labs. In that position he was responsible for overseeing the regulatory affairs (operations and strategy) for Merck's Emerging Markets ("EM") group, which originally was comprised of Brazil, Russia, India, China, Korea, Turkey, and Mexico. One of his first efforts in that position was the integration of the Most of World regulatory organization into the company's EM Regulatory team to form a collaborative, global R & D regulatory organization with more than 325 staff operating in over 125 countries. He also worked to develop robust interfaces with regulatory support teams throughout Merck's business units including Worldwide Product Labeling, Global Regulatory Operations, Global Safety, and Merck Enterprise groups including Global Human Health, Merck Manufacturing Division, Merck Consumer Care and Merck Vaccines Division.
Previously at Merck, Dr. Altarac held the position of Vice President, Worldwide Regulatory Group 2, in which he was responsible for all regulatory affairs, strategic activities for the bone, respiratory, inflammation, endocrine (except diabetes), oncology, neurosciences, ophthalmology, women's health franchises and programs in gastrointestinal, anemia, and urology. He also led the Worldwide Product Labeling Organization responsible for developing and maintaining all Merck product labels for drugs, biologics and vaccines. In these roles and other senior leadership positions at Merck, Dr. Altarac was often the senior representative of the company who liaised with regulatory agencies on issues related to franchise, development and other initiatives, and he was a key member of the company's global regulatory affairs leadership team. He also managed teams leading the commercialization of products in important areas including respiratory, oncology, urology, central nervous system and women's health.
Dr. Altarac is a trained infectious diseases and internal medicine physician, receiving his M.D. from New York Medical College. He also holds a Master of Public Administration from the Robert F. Wagner School of Public Science of New York University. He completed his B.A. at the State University of New York at Binghamton.
"I am honored to join NeoStem at such an exciting time in the Company's development," said Dr. Altarac. "NeoStem is known in the industry for its pioneering technologies and unique business model, and I am pleased to join this outstanding team and provide my diversity of experiences to guide and advance the Company's clinical programs."
"The addition of a seasoned pharmaceutical executive like David to our growing management team of industry experts is a testament to our commitment to work to successfully develop a strong and diversified pipeline," said Dr. Robin Smith, Chairman and CEO of NeoStem. "His regulatory expertise will greatly benefit NeoStem as we continue to navigate the regulatory terrain required to advance our development pipeline with the goal of ultimately seeking commercialization of our cell therapies."
About NeoStem, Inc.
NeoStem, Inc. is a leader in the emerging cellular therapy industry. Our business model includes the development of novel proprietary cell therapy products as well as operating a contract development and manufacturing organization providing services to others in the regenerative medicine industry. The combination of a therapeutic development business and revenue-generating service provider business provides the Company with capabilities for cost effective in-house product development and immediate revenue and cash flow generation.
For more information, please visit www.neostem.com.
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements reflect management's current expectations, as of the date of this press release, and involve certain risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements include statements herein with respect to the successful execution of the Company's business strategy, including with respect to the successful development of cellular therapies, including with respect to AMR-001 and regulatory T cells, the future of the regenerative medicine industry and the role of stem cells and cellular therapy in that industry and the Company's ability to successfully grow its contract development and manufacturing business. The Company's actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements as a result of various factors. Factors that could cause future results to materially differ from the recent results or those projected in forward-looking statements include the "Risk Factors" described in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 11, 2013 and in the Company's periodic filings with the SEC. The Company's further development is highly dependent on future medical and research developments and market acceptance, which is outside its control.
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