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Xenetic Biosciences Appoints Industry Veteran Mark Leuchtenberger as Chairman of the Board of Directors

LEXINGTON, Mass., May 5, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Xenetic Biosciences, Inc. (OTCBB:XBIO), a biopharmaceutical company developing next-generation biologic drugs and novel oncology therapeutics, today announced the appointment of Mark Leuchtenberger as Non-Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors.

Scott Maguire, CEO of Xenetic Biosciences said: "We are extremely pleased to welcome Mark as Chairman of the Board of Xenetic. His extensive track record as an experienced biopharmaceutical CEO and board member in both North America and Europe and his proven ability to build and manage successful organizations will be invaluable in helping Xenetic grow into a leading U.S. biopharmaceutical company and achieve our corporate goals."

"I am honored to join the Xenetic Board of Directors as Non-Executive Chairman, particularly at this important juncture in the Company's development," said Mark Leuchtenberger. "I believe that the Company's drug candidates are poised to offer great benefits to patients in important areas of unmet medical need and I look forward to working with the whole Xenetic team to progress these programs through clinical development and to market."

Mark Leuchtenberger brings substantial biopharmaceutical experience to his role as Non-Executive Chairman. He is currently the President and CEO of Acusphere, Inc., a late-stage, specialty pharmaceutical company focused on cardiac imagery, with a lead program in Phase 3 clinical development. Before joining Acusphere in 2013, Mr. Leuchtenberger served as President, Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board of Directors at Rib-X Pharmaceuticals from 2010 to 2013. He also served as President and Chief Executive Officer at Targanta Therapeutics, where he led the company's initial public offering in 2007 and its acquisition in 2009, and at Therion Biologics from 2002 to 2006. Prior to Therion, Mr. Leuchtenberger worked as a senior officer at Biogen Idec, where he led the Avonex® development and launch in the U.S. In addition, he has served as Chairman of the Board for the Massachusetts Biotechnology Council and is currently a Trustee of Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital. Mr. Leuchtenberger holds an M.B.A. from Yale's School of Management and a B.A. from Wake Forest University.

Mr. Leuchtenberger will succeed Sir Brian Richards as Chairman of the Board. Sir Brian, who has chaired Xenetic's Board since June 2005, will continue to support the Company as Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board.

"We are deeply grateful to Sir Brian Richards for his leadership and dedication to Xenetic. Although I will miss Sir Brian's guidance and professionalism, which I have relied upon for the last 9 years, this step was inevitable given our transition to the U.S. The Board and I cannot thank him enough for his contribution," said Scott Maguire.

"I am delighted to be able to continue to support the Company in my role as Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board," said Sir Brian. "Xenetic is creating drugs with truly transformative potential and I look forward to contributing to that effort through the medium of the SAB."

Xenetic also announced the appointment of Roman Knyazev, an experienced financial professional, to the Board of Directors. Mr. Knyazev is a senior investment manager at RUSNANO (the Russian state-sponsored nanotechnology fund) and is an appointee of SynBio, a RUSNANO-controlled entity and currently the largest shareholder of Xenetic. He has worked at RUSNANO for the last 5 years, prior to which time he worked at PriceWaterhouseCoopers from 2007 to 2009 and at Deloitte Consulting from 2005 to 2007. He is a member of the SynBio Board of Directors and is a nominated Non-Executive Director being appointed pursuant to the agreement entered into between Xenetic and SynBio, whereby SynBio is entitled to nominate two directors to the Xenetic Board subject to SynBio holding not less than 40% of the Company's equity share capital. Mr. Knyazev is also a Deputy Chairman at Pharmsynthez, PETAR and Nanolek.

About Xenetic Biosciences

Xenetic Biosciences is a biopharmaceutical company developing next-generation biologic drugs and novel orphan oncology therapeutics. Xenetic's proprietary drug technology platforms include PolyXen® for creating next generation biologic drugs by extending the efficacy and half-life of biologic drugs and OncoHist® for the development of novel oncology drugs focused on orphan indications. Xenetic's lead product candidates include ErepoXen®, an improved, polysialylated form of erythropoietin (EPO) for the treatment of anemia in pre-dialysis patients with chronic kidney disease and OncoHist®, a recombinant human histone H1.3 molecule which Xenetic is developing for the treatment of refractory and relapsed Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML). Xenetic has entered into a license agreement with Baxter International, Inc. for the development of a novel series of polysialylated blood coagulation factors. Xenetic is also developing a broad pipeline of clinical candidates for next generation biologics and novel oncology therapeutics in a number of orphan disease indications. For more information, please visit the Company's website at www.xeneticbio.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

Certain statements in this press release are forward-looking within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements may be identified by the use of forward-looking words such as "anticipate," "believe," "forecast," "estimate" and "intend," among others. These forward-looking statements are based on Xenetic's current expectations and actual results could differ materially. There are a number of factors that could cause actual events to differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially include, but are not limited to, uncertainties associated with completing preclinical and clinical trials for our technologies; the early stage of product development; the significant costs to develop our products as all of our products are currently in development, preclinical studies or clinical trials; obtaining additional financing to support our operations and the development of our products; obtaining regulatory approval for our technologies; anticipated timing of regulatory filings and the potential success in gaining regulatory approval and complying with governmental regulations applicable to our business. Xenetic does not undertake an obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement. The information set forth herein speaks only as of the date hereof.

CONTACT: Xenetic Biosciences Inc. www.xeneticbio.com M. Scott Maguire, Chief Executive Officer +44 (0)20 3021 1500 g.fry@xeneticbio.com US Contact: Stern Investor Relations Paul Cox 212 362 1200 paul@sternir.com UK/European Contact: Walbrook PR Mike Wort +44 (0)20 7933 8780Source:Xenetic Biosciences, Inc.