WINNIPEG, Manitoba, July 16, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Viventia Bio Inc., a late clinical-stage company advancing a broad pipeline of novel anti-cancer agents, today recognized Leslie L. Dan, Founder and Chairman of Viventia, for his 50 years of leadership in the life sciences. In 1965, Mr. Dan founded the generic pharmaceuticals company Novopharm Ltd., which grew to become the second-largest generic drug manufacturer in Canada prior to its acquisition by pharmaceutical company Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. in 2000. A widely respected businessman, Mr. Dan is acknowledged for his dedication to corporate responsibility and philanthropy and was made a Member of the Order of Canada and awarded the Order of Ontario for his many contributions.
"Leslie Dan's many achievements as an outstanding Canadian entrepreneur, innovator, and humanitarian have had a lasting impact on the pharmaceutical manufacturing industry and beyond," commented Stephen Hurly, Viventia's Chief Executive Officer. "He has contributed greatly to increasing access to medicines worldwide and has supported many leading healthcare organizations in Canada and globally. Fighting cancer is a cause very close to Dan's heart, and we are fortunate to have his guidance and support at Viventia as we continue to advance our breakthrough product candidates in oncology."
Mr. Dan earned his B.Sc.Phm degree from the University of Toronto in 1954 and his MBA degree from the University in 1959. A survivor of the Holocaust, he was born in Budapest, Hungary, and migrated to Canada as teenager in 1947, where he has lived ever since.
In 1965, Mr. Dan founded Novopharm Ltd., a company that initially sold one product – a generic version of the antibiotic tetracycline – which grew into a leading generic pharmaceutical manufacturer operating in three countries with a staff of more than 3,000 personnel and eight manufacturing plants. In 2000, Mr. Dan sold Novopharm to the world's largest producer of generic drugs, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries of Israel.
Mr. Dan has dedicated his expertise and philanthropic resources to battling diseases and supporting healthcare innovation worldwide. In 1985, he founded the Canadian Medicine Aid Programme (CAN-MAP), which provides medicines and other aid to developing countries. He also has made significant donations to the University of Toronto, in recognition of which the University named the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy and the Leslie L. Dan Pharmacy Building, the first project of architect Norman Foster in Canada, which was completed in 2005. In addition, Mr. Dan has supported the Casey House Hospice and the Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto, and he led the building fund and expansion of the Hungarian Jewish Hospital in Budapest.
Mr. Dan is on the Advisory Boards of the Schulich Business School in Toronto, the Faculty of Pharmacy of the University of Toronto, and the Royal Conservatory of Music. He has received honorary degrees from the University of Toronto, Dalhousie University, and the University of British Columbia.
"I have been very fortunate in my career, and one of the most important aspects of my career has been the ability to combine dedication with a sense or intuition in terms of how the world is developing," said Leslie Dan. "I am exceedingly grateful for the past five decades, but equally important is that I'm excited for the future. I always have an interest in nurturing the next generations, in making contributions to world health, and seeking new opportunities to innovate and advance medicine."
About Viventia Bio
Viventia Bio is a late clinical-stage company advancing a broad pipeline of novel anti-cancer agents based on the Company's Targeted Protein Therapeutics (TPTs) platform. TPTs are fully biologic fusion constructs containing antibody fragments, a proprietary linker, and protein toxin payloads. The Company believes its platform offers significant advantages in treating cancer versus earlier technologies, including superior tumor targeting and better cancer cell-killing properties thru the utilization of protein payloads versus small molecules, as well as enhanced linker stability and more efficient manufacturing.
Viventia's lead clinical candidates, Vicinium™ and Proxinium™, are anticipated to progress in Phase 3 testing in 2015 for locoregional treatment of patients with non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) and squamous cell carcinoma of the head & neck (SCCHN), respectively. Earlier-stage programs are focused on de-immunized, systemic candidates, including VB6-901, indicated for solid tumors and expected to enter Phase 1 testing in the first quarter of next year, as well as additional preclinical candidates targeting solid tumors. Viventia was founded by life sciences entrepreneur and philanthropist Leslie L. Dan.
CONTACT: Justin Jackson, Burns McClellan, on behalf of Viventia Bio 212-213-0006, ext.327 email@example.comSource:Viventia Bio Inc.