SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., Jan. 05, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Achaogen, Inc. (NASDAQ:AKAO), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing novel antibacterials addressing multi-drug resistant (MDR) gram-negative infections, today announced the appointment of Halley Gilbert, Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer of Ironwood Pharmaceuticals, Inc., to its Board of Directors. Ms. Gilbert brings significant strategic leadership and two decades of experience navigating biopharmaceutical companies through various phases of growth and opportunity.
“Halley’s expertise and counsel come at an exciting time for our company, as we pursue regulatory approval of our lead product candidate, plazomicin, for the treatment of serious bacterial infections due to MDR Enterobacteriaceae, including carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae,” said Kenneth Hillan, M.B. Ch.B., Achaogen's Chief Executive Officer. “Halley’s seasoned judgment and success helping biotechnology companies build and integrate critical functions and bring new products to market will be invaluable to Achaogen as we enter our next phase of growth and beyond.”
"I have tremendous respect for Achaogen’s passion and commitment to developing innovative medicine and making patients’ lives better,” said Ms. Gilbert. “I look forward to working with existing board members and the Achaogen management team to support plazomicin’s commercial objectives and advance the Company’s pipeline of promising candidates.”
Ms. Gilbert joined Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Ironwood Pharmaceuticals in 2008 as a founding member of its legal department, providing leadership and oversight and establishing the Company’s compliance function as Ironwood grew from a privately-held, research-based organization to a publicly-traded, fully-integrated commercial biotechnology company. Prior to Ironwood, Ms. Gilbert was Vice President, Deputy General Counsel at Cubist Pharmaceuticals, Inc. from 2002 to 2008, where she supported the launch of Cubist’s first acute care antibiotic, and she served as Corporate Counsel at Genzyme Corp. from 1999 to 2001. Ms. Gilbert began her legal career at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, where she specialized in mergers and acquisitions and securities law.
Ms. Gilbert received a J.D. from Northwestern University School of Law in Illinois and a B.A. from Tufts University in Massachusetts. She is currently a member of the Board of Directors of Allergy Amulet, Inc., a privately-held allergy device company, and of Greater Boston Legal Services, a not-for-profit entity that provides free legal services to more than 10,000 individuals and families in need per year.
Achaogen is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company passionately committed to the discovery, development, and commercialization of novel antibacterials to treat MDR gram-negative infections. Achaogen is developing plazomicin, Achaogen’s lead product candidate, for the treatment of serious bacterial infections due to MDR Enterobacteriaceae, including carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae. Achaogen’s plazomicin program is funded in part with a contract from the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority. Plazomicin is the first clinical candidate from Achaogen’s gram-negative antibiotic discovery engine, and Achaogen has other programs in early and late preclinical stages focused on other MDR gram-negative infections. For more information, please visit www.achaogen.com.
This press release contains forward-looking statements. All statements other than statements of historical facts contained herein are forward-looking statements reflecting the current beliefs and expectations of management made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including, but not limited to, Achaogen’s expectations regarding potential regulatory approval of plazomicin, Achaogen’s commercial objectives and Achaogen's pipeline of product candidates. Such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other important factors that may cause Achaogen's actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, among others, the uncertainties inherent in the preclinical and clinical development process; the risk of failure to successfully validate, develop and obtain regulatory clearance or approval for an in vitro diagnostic (IVD) assay for plazomicin; the risks and uncertainties of the regulatory approval process; the risks and uncertainties of commercialization and gaining market acceptance; the risk that bacteria may evolve resistance to plazomicin; risks and uncertainties as to Achaogen's ability to raise additional capital to support the development and potential commercialization of plazomicin and its other programs; uncertainties regarding the availability of adequate third-party coverage and reimbursement for newly approved products; Achaogen's reliance on third parties to conduct certain preclinical studies and all of its clinical trials; Achaogen's reliance on third-party contract manufacturing organizations to manufacture and supply its product candidates and certain raw materials used in the production thereof; Achaogen's dependence on its President and Chief Executive Officer; risks and uncertainties related to the acceptance of government funding for certain of Achaogen's programs, including the risk that BARDA could terminate Achaogen's contract for the funding of the plazomicin development program; risk of third party claims alleging infringement of patents and proprietary rights or seeking to invalidate Achaogen's patents or proprietary rights; and the risk that Achaogen's proprietary rights may be insufficient to protect its technologies and product candidates. For a further description of the risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ from those expressed in these forward- looking statements, as well as risks relating to Achaogen's business in general, see Achaogen's current and future reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2016, and its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2015. Achaogen does not plan to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements contained in this press release, whether as a result of any new information, future events, changed circumstances or otherwise.