NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–IVERIC bio, Inc. (NASDAQ: ISEE) announced today the appointment of Guangping Gao, PhD, as Chief Strategist, Gene Therapy. Dr. Gao brings over 30 years of scientific research experience in gene-based treatments. As one of the world’s leading gene therapy experts, Dr. Gao’s highly distinguished career includes major contributions to the development of adeno-associated virus (AAV) gene delivery technology. Dr. Gao is the current President of the American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy (ASGCT). In his advisory role, Dr. Gao will help shape IVERIC bio’s gene therapy strategy going forward.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors and management team at IVERIC bio, we are extremely excited to welcome Dr. Gao to IVERIC bio,” stated Glenn P. Sblendorio, Chief Executive Officer and President of IVERIC bio. “Our goal at IVERIC bio is to become a leading retina company with a diversified portfolio addressing significant unmet medical needs in large market age-related retinal indications and inherited retinal diseases by utilizing both therapeutics and gene therapies. Dr. Gao’s extensive background in gene therapy will be instrumental in shaping the direction of our gene therapy portfolio. It is a true privilege to work with him closely and benefit from his extensive expertise during these exciting times at our company.”
“I am delighted to have the opportunity to be a part of the IVERIC bio team,” stated Dr. Gao. “I am impressed with the progress that IVERIC bio had made with their diverse pipeline of novel gene therapy solutions to treat orphan inherited retinal diseases (IRDs). I look forward to working closely with the team to help build and maximize the potential of the Company’s gene therapy programs.”
“Dr. Gao is a world-renowned scientist and researcher who is a pioneer in AAV gene delivery technology,” stated Kourous A. Rezaei, MD, Chief Medical Officer of IVERIC bio. “We believe that the combination of Dr. Gao’s expertise in gene therapy and our knowledge and experience in drug development for retinal diseases will help set the stage for the proficient execution of our gene therapy strategy, advancing it to the next stage of evolution. We will also continue to move forward our Zimura, complement C5 inhibitor, programs as expeditiously as possible.”
About Guangping Gao, PhD
Dr. Gao is the Co-Director, Li Weibo Institute for Rare Diseases Research, Director, Horae Gene Therapy Center and Viral Vector Core, Professor of Microbiology and Physiological Systems and Penelope Booth Rockwell Professor in Biomedical Research, at the University of Massachusetts Medical School; an elected fellow of both the US National Academy of Inventors (NAI) and the American Academy of Microbiology; and the current President of the American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy.
Dr. Gao is an internationally recognized gene therapy researcher who has played a key role in the discovery and characterization of a new family of adeno-associated virus (AAV) serotypes, which was instrumental in reviving the gene therapy field, providing technology to enable potential treatments for many currently untreatable human diseases. For nearly 30 years of his scientific research career, Dr. Gao has primarily focused on molecular genetics and viral vector gene therapy for rare genetic diseases, with research encompassing disease gene cloning, causative mutation identification, pathomechanism investigation, animal modeling, novel viral vector discovery and engineering for in vivo gene delivery, vector biology, preclinical and clinical gene therapy product development, and viral vector manufacturing for preclinical and clinical gene therapy applications, as well as development of technology platforms for novel approaches for human gene therapy.
Dr. Gao has published 267 research papers, 6 book chapters, and 5 edited books and serves as Editor of Human Gene Therapy, Senior Editor of the Gene and Cell Therapy book series, Associate Editor of Signal Transduction and Targeted Therapy, and on the editorial boards of several other gene therapy and virology journals. Dr. Gao holds 135 patents with 239 additional patent applications pending. Dr. Gao’s inventions have been licensed to and are currently in development by over ten pharmaceutical companies. Recently, Dr. Gao was ranked as #4 on Nature Biotechnology’s list of the World’s Top 20 Translational Researchers for 2017.
About IVERIC bio
IVERIC bio is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of novel treatment options for retinal diseases with significant unmet medical needs. Vision is Our Mission. For more information on the Company please visit www.ivericbio.com.
IVERIC bio Forward-looking Statements
Any statements in this press release about the Company’s future expectations, plans and prospects constitute forward-looking statements for purposes of the safe harbor provisions under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements include any statements about the Company’s strategy, future operations and future expectations and plans and prospects for the Company, and any other statements containing the words “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend”, “goal,” “may”, “might,” “plan,” “predict,” “project,” “target,” “potential,” “will,” “would,” “could,” “should,” “continue,” and similar expressions. In this press release, the Company’s forward looking statements include statements about the implementation of its strategic plan to seek to address significant unmet medical needs in large market age-related retinal indications and inherited retinal diseases by utilizing both therapeutics and gene therapies, the timing, progress and results of clinical trials and other research and development activities, including manufacturing activities, the potential utility of its product candidates and the potential for its business development strategy. Such forward-looking statements involve substantial risks and uncertainties that could cause the Company’s development programs, future results, performance or achievements to differ significantly from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, among others, those related to the initiation and the conduct and design of research programs and clinical trials, establishment of manufacturing capabilities, availability of data from these programs, reliance on university collaborators and other third parties, expectations for regulatory matters, need for additional financing and negotiation and consummation of business development transactions and other factors discussed in the “Risk Factors” section contained in the quarterly and annual reports that the Company files with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Any forward-looking statements represent the Company’s views only as of the date of this press release. The Company anticipates that subsequent events and developments will cause its views to change. While the Company may elect to update these forward-looking statements at some point in the future, the Company specifically disclaims any obligation to do so except as required by law.