SAN DIEGO, May 23, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Vical Incorporated (VICL) announced today the appointment of two additional members to Vical's Board of Directors: Richard M. Beleson, currently retired, following a distinguished career as an analyst and institutional investor in the life sciences industries, and Stephen A. Sherwin, M.D., a broadly accomplished and highly respected medical oncologist and biotechnology entrepreneur.
"We are pleased to further strengthen Vical's Board of Directors with the capabilities, experience and knowledge represented by these two exceptional individuals," said Vijay B. Samant, President and Chief Executive Officer of Vical. "Rick's outstanding record of analyzing and selecting investment opportunities has generated solid returns for investors and provided a major source of capital for research-driven publicly traded life science companies. Steve's expertise in blending scientific innovation with business acumen, his broad knowledge of medical oncology and drug development, and his rational approach and disciplined leadership have fueled a series of important achievements in the biotechnology industry. The complementary skill sets embodied in these two gentlemen are particularly applicable as we progress through the completion of our pivotal trial of Allovectin(R) and advance our vaccine programs for the prevention or control of cytomegalovirus (CMV) and herpes simplex type 2 (HSV-2) infections."
Richard M. Beleson
Mr. Beleson retired as a Senior Vice President with the Capital Group Companies in 2010, where from 1984 until his retirement, he served as an equity investment analyst and institutional investor focused on the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. Mr. Beleson also served as a Vice President of the Growth Fund of America, and during his career had investment responsibilities in the Investment Company of America, Washington Mutual Investors Fund, the Income Fund of America, Fundamental Investors, the AMCAP Fund, the New Perspective Fund, and the Smallcap World Fund.
Mr. Beleson received his B.S. degree in biological sciences from Stanford University and his M.B.A. degree in finance and accounting from the UCLA Graduate School of Management. He currently serves as a director of Spineview, Inc., and is on the advisory board of the UCLA Anderson School of Management Center for Global Management. In addition, Mr. Beleson is on the board of trustees of the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco and the American Numismatics Society.
Stephen A. Sherwin, M.D.
Dr. Sherwin currently divides his time between advisory work in the life science industry and patient care and teaching in his specialty of medical oncology. Dr. Sherwin is a Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, and a volunteer Attending Physician in the Hematology/Oncology Division of San Francisco General Hospital.
Previously Dr. Sherwin was Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Cell Genesys, Inc., from 1990 until the company's merger with BioSante Pharmaceuticals in 2009. He was also a co-founder and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Abgenix, Inc., an antibody company which was acquired by Amgen, Inc., in 2006. From 1983 to 1990, Dr. Sherwin held various positions at Genentech, Inc., most recently as Vice President of Clinical Research. Prior to 1983, he was on the staff of the National Cancer Institute.
Dr. Sherwin received his B.A. degree in biology from Yale University and his M.D. degree from Harvard Medical School. He is board-certified in internal medicine and medical oncology. He is a fellow of the American College of Physicians and a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology and the American Association for Cancer Research. He is co-founder and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Ceregene, Inc., and a member of the boards of directors of Biogen Idec Inc., BioSante Pharmaceuticals Inc., Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc., Rigel Pharmaceuticals, Inc., and Verastem, Inc. He is also a member of the board and Chairman Emeritus of the Biotechnology Industry Organization and has recently served on the President's Council of Advisors for Science and Technology (PCAST) Working Group on Advancing Innovation in Drug Development and Evaluation.
Vical researches and develops biopharmaceutical products based on its patented DNA delivery technologies for the prevention and treatment of serious or life-threatening diseases. Potential applications of the company's DNA delivery technology include DNA vaccines for infectious diseases or cancer, in which the expressed protein is an immunogen; cancer immunotherapeutics, in which the expressed protein is an immune system stimulant; and cardiovascular therapies, in which the expressed protein is an angiogenic growth factor. The company is developing certain infectious disease vaccines and cancer therapeutics internally. In addition, the company collaborates with major pharmaceutical companies and biotechnology companies that give it access to complementary technologies or greater resources. These strategic partnerships provide the company with mutually beneficial opportunities to expand its product pipeline and address significant unmet medical needs. Additional information on Vical is available at www.vical.com.
This press release contains forward-looking statements subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected. Forward-looking statements include statements regarding the development of Allovectin(R) and vaccines for the prevention or control of CMV and HSV-2 infections, as well as the future contributions of Mr. Beleson and Dr. Sherwin to Vical's Board of Directors. Actual results set forth in or implied by these forward-looking statements may differ materially as a result of various risks and uncertainties. These risks and uncertainties include whether Vical or others will continue development of Allovectin(R), CMV or HSV-2 vaccines, or any other product candidates; whether Allovectin(R), CMV or HSV-2 vaccines, or any other product candidates will be successfully developed, approved or commercialized; whether Vical or its collaborative partners will seek or gain approval to market Allovectin(R), CMV or HSV-2 vaccines, or any other product candidates; whether Vical or its collaborative partners will succeed in marketing Allovectin(R), CMV or HSV-2 vaccines, or any other product candidates; and additional risks set forth in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These forward-looking statements represent the company's judgment as of the date of this release. The company disclaims, however, any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements.
Alan R. Engbring