REDWOOD CITY, Calif. -- (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Relypsa, Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, announced today the recent appointment of two industry veterans to serve on the company’s board of directors: Paul J. Hastings, President and CEO of OncoMed Pharmaceuticals, and David W.J. McGirr, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Cubist Pharmaceuticals.
“Paul and David are widely respected business leaders with broad strategic, operational and deal-making expertise which will be invaluable as we build upon our late stage clinical program, gear up to be a commercial stage company and advance our corporate development strategy,” said Gerrit Klaerner, Ph.D., President of Relypsa. “Together they will further diversify the outstanding talents and wide-ranging experience that our current directors already provide, bringing new insight and perspectives during this exciting period of change for the company.”
About Paul J. Hastings
Mr. Hastings is the President and CEO of OncoMed Pharmaceuticals. Prior to joining OncoMed in 2006, Mr. Hastings was President and Chief Executive Officer of QLT, Inc. Previous to that, Mr. Hastings served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Axys Pharmaceuticals, which was acquired by Celera Corporation in 2001. From 1999 to 2001, Mr. Hastings served as the President of Chiron BioPharmaceuticals, a division of Chiron Corporation. Prior to that, he was President and Chief Executive Officer of LXR Biotechnology. Mr. Hastings also held a series of management positions of increasing responsibility at Genzyme Corporation, including serving as President of Genzyme Therapeutics Europe as well as President of Worldwide Therapeutics. Mr. Hastings also served as Vice President, Marketing and Sales and General Manager, Europe for Synergen, Inc., and previously held a series of marketing and sales management positions with Hoffmann-La Roche. Mr. Hastings was recently Chairman of the Board of Proteolix (sold to Onyx Pharmaceuticals in 2009), and served on the boards of ViaCell (sold to Perkin-Elmer in 2008), and Cerimon Pharmaceuticals. He is currently on the board of Pacira Pharmaceuticals, serves as Chairman of the Emerging Companies Section of the Biotechnology Industry Organization, and was Chairman of the Bay Area Biosciences Association (BayBio). Mr. Hastings received a Bachelor of Science degree in pharmacy from the University of Rhode Island.
About David W.J. McGirr
Mr. McGirr is Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Cubist Pharmaceuticals. Prior to joining Cubist in 2002, Mr. McGirr was the President and Chief Operating Officer of hippo inc, an internet technology, venture-financed company. Mr. McGirr served as a member of hippo's Board of Directors from 1999 to 2003. From 1996 to 1999, he was the President of GAB Robins North America, Inc., a risk management company, serving also as Chief Executive Officer from 1997 to 1999. Mr. McGirr was a private equity investor from 1995 to 1996. From 1978 to 1995, Mr. McGirr served in various positions within the S.G. Warburg Group, ultimately as Chief Financial Officer, Chief Administrative Officer and Managing Director of S.G. Warburg & Co., Inc., a position held from 1992 to 1995. Mr. McGirr received a B.Sc. in Civil Engineering from the University of Glasgow and received an M.B.A. from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
About Patiromer and Hyperkalemia
Hyperkalemia is a condition frequently prevalent in patients that suffer from renal impairment, hypertension, diabetes and/or heart failure. It is characterized by elevated serum potassium levels, which can lead to cardiac arrhythmia and sudden death. Patients with chronic kidney disease are at particular risk for developing hyperkalemia, especially those treated with renin-angiotensin-aldosterone-system (RAAS) inhibitors. Although RAAS inhibition has been shown to protect kidney and cardiac function, as well as prolong life, many patients who could benefit from RAAS inhibitors are untreated or undertreated due to the undesirable side effect of increasing serum potassium.
Patiromer (RLY5016) is a high capacity non-absorbed oral potassium binder being developed for the management of elevated serum potassium levels. Relypsa has completed several clinical trials of patiromer that have demonstrated the preliminary efficacy, safety and tolerability of patiromer for the treatment of hyperkalemia.
About Relypsa, Inc.
Relypsa, Inc. is a late clinical-stage pharmaceutical company leading the discovery and development of novel non-absorbed polymeric drugs for important applications in cardiovascular and renal diseases. Relypsa's lead product candidate is patiromer, a non-absorbed potassium binder for the treatment of hyperkalemia. Relypsa is pursuing the discovery of additional product candidates through use of its proprietary polymer platform. More information is available at www.relypsa.com.