NOVATO, Calif., Feb. 24, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical Inc. (Nasdaq:RARE), a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of novel products for rare and ultra-rare diseases, today announced the appointment of Michael Narachi to the company's Board of Directors effective February 20, 2015. Mr. Narachi, President and Chief Executive Officer and a director of Orexigen Therapeutics Inc., will serve as an independent director to Ultragenyx.
"On behalf of the Board of Directors and Executive Team at Ultragenyx, I am pleased to welcome Mike to the Board. With his proven track record leading young biotech companies, Mike's broad expertise and diverse experience will be of tremendous value to Ultragenyx as it enters the next phase of its development," said Emil D. Kakkis, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of Ultragenyx.
"I am excited to join Ultragenyx at a critical time of the company's growth and to be a part of the continued progress of advancing drug development to addressing severe and potentially life-threatening diseases," said Mr. Narachi. "I look forward to working closely with the Board and the Ultragenyx team to bring therapies to patients affected by these rare and ultra-rare diseases."
Mr. Narachi currently serves as President and Chief Executive Officer and a director of Orexigen Therapeutics Inc., a position he has held since March 2009. Previously, Mr. Narachi served as Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President of Ren Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a private biotechnology company, from November 2006 to March 2009. From August 2002 to January 2008, Mr. Narachi served as chairman of the board of directors of Naryx Pharma, Inc., a private pharmaceutical company. Mr. Narachi joined Amgen in 1984 and held various senior positions throughout the organization over a 20 year career including: Vice President of Development and Representative Director for Amgen Japan; Head of Corporate Strategic Planning; Chief Operations Officer of Amgen BioPharma; and Vice President, Licensing and Business Development. He served as General Manager of Amgen's Anemia Business from 1999 to 2003 until his retirement in 2004 as an officer and Vice President of Amgen, Inc. He currently serves as the chairman of the board of directors of Celladon Corporation, a publicly traded biotechnology company. Mr. Narachi received a B.S. in Biology and an M.A. degree in Biology and Genetics from the University of California at Davis. He received an M.B.A. from the Anderson Graduate School of Management at University of California, Los Angeles.
Ultragenyx is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company committed to bringing to market novel products for the treatment of rare and ultra-rare diseases, with a focus on serious, debilitating genetic diseases. Founded in 2010, the company has rapidly built a diverse portfolio of product candidates with the potential to address diseases for which the unmet medical need is high, the biology for treatment is clear, and for which there are no approved therapies.
The company is led by a management team experienced in the development and commercialization of rare disease therapeutics. Ultragenyx's strategy is predicated upon time and cost-efficient drug development, with the goal of delivering safe and effective therapies to patients with the utmost urgency.
For more information on Ultragenyx, please visit the company's website at www.ultragenyx.com.
CONTACT: Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical Inc. 844-758-7273 For Media, Bee Nguyen For Investors, Robert Anstey
Source:Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical Inc.