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PEOPLE: GenomeWeb s Weekly Personnel Roundup in the Genomics Sector: Nov 21, 2001

NEW YORK, Nov. 21 — Xenon Genetics made two senior management changes last week, adding a new vice president and promoting another vice president into the new job of chief operating officer.

 

The company said on Nov. 20 that it had hired Celia Courchene as vice president for business development. According to the company, she will bring her experience in business development to bear on Xenon’s efforts to expand its drug discovery and business activities.

 

Courchene was previously vice president of business development and legal affairs for QLT of Vancouver, a biotech company specializing in developing photodynamic therapies, and head of business development for NeXstar Pharmaceuticals.

 

On Nov. 15 Xenon said that it had promoted Simon Pimstone, its former vice president for clinical and medical affairs, to the newly created post of chief operating offer. Pimstone, one of the founders of the company, will guide the company’s drug-discovery process toward pre-clinical and clinical development and assist in strategic planning and corporate development.

 

Vancouver, British Columbia-based Xenon Genetics is a privately owned genomics company  focusing on drug discovery for cardiovascular, neurological, metabolic and ocular diseases.

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Fremont, Calif.-based Abgenix announced on Nov. 19 that its president and chief operating officer, Raymond Withy, will be replacing R. Scott Greer as chief executive officer in mid-2002. Withy will immediately join the company’s board of directors.

 

Withy, 46, has been an officer with the company since its founding, and was named president and COO at the beginning of this year.

 

Greer, who became CEO in 1996, will remain with the company as chairman of the board.

 

Abgenix’s technology allows it to develop human monoclonal antibody therapies from genetically engineered mice. The publicly owned company now has three drug candidates in clinical trials, treatments for graft v. host disease, EGF-dependent cancer, and rheumatoid arthritis.

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Deltagen said Nov. 19 that it had appointed Constantine Anagnostopoulos, a Monsanto veteran, to its board of directors.

 

Anagnostopoulos spent 35 years at Monsanto, ultimately as vice chairman of corporate development and growth and as president and CEO of Monsanto’s venture capital company. He also now serves on the boards of Genzyme and Dyax.

 

Redwood City, Calif.-based Deltagen markets a database of mammalian gene function information derived from in vivo data. The company also focuses on discovery and development of drug candidates derived from its study of secreted proteins.

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Oncotech said on Nov. 16 that it had added Dennis Kibler to its scientific advisory board as a bioinformatics advisor. The company said that Kibler will use his knowledge of computational genomic analysis and mathematical expertise to further the statistical analysis of gene and protein expression data.

 

Kibler is currently professor in the Information & Computer Science department at the University of California at Irvine, and is expert in bioinformatics, machine learning, problem solving, and artificial intelligence.

 

Tustin, Calif.-based Oncotech develops molecular oncology tests and new diagnostics for a range of cancers.

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Woburn, Mass.-based U.S. Genomics said on Nov. 15 that it had appointed David Hoey as vice president of business development. Company CEO Eugene Chan said in a statement that Hoey was chosen for his experience in developing alliances and joint venture investments.

 

Hoey was previously vice president of marketing and business development for InfoLibria, an Internet infrastructure company.

 

The announcement follows the Oct. 31 appointment of Michael Olex as senior vice president of operations and manufacturing.

 

U.S. Genomics, founded in 1997, develops its linear DNA analysis technology for applications in drug discovery, pharmacogenomics, and diagnostics.

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Structural Bioinformatics announced on Nov. 15 that it had hired David Muth as president and chief operating officer. Muth will assume oversight of sales, marketing, database production, and research.

 

Muth was previously senior vice president of business operations at NABI as the company grew from a plasma supplier to a biopharmaceutical company. He also spent 17 years in management at Johnson & Johnson.

 

San Diego-based Structural Bioinformatics specializes in proteomics-based drug discovery. ________________________________________________________________

 

Kimmen Sjolander, previously principal scientist of the protein informatics group at Celera, has joined the University of California at Berkeley’s Department of Bioengineering. She is now an assistant professor in the department, and will continue her work in identification of protein domains, predicting binding pockets in proteins, subfamily classification, molecular evolution, protein-protein interaction, and related subjects.

 

Sjolander has worked at Celera Genomics since 1999 and was instrumental in developing its Panther technology.

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Promoted? Changing jobs? GenomeWeb wants to know. Help us keep track of you by e-mailing us at [email protected]. 

 

PEOPLE, a roundup of personnel comings and goings in the genomics sector, appears every Wednesday. 

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