OncoSec Appoints Renowned Oncologist and Immunologist, Herbert Kim Lyerly, M.D., Duke University, to its Board of Directors
Avtar Dhillon, M.D., Resigns as Chair of the Board; Current Board Member, Margaret R. Dalesandro, Ph.D., Assumes the Role of Chair
SAN DIEGO and PENNINGTON, N.J., April 20, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- OncoSec Medical Incorporated (Nasdaq:ONCS) (the "Company" or "OncoSec"), a company developing late-stage intratumoral cancer immunotherapies, today announced the appointment of Herbert Kim Lyerly, M.D., George Barth Geller Professor, Professor of Immunology, Surgery and Pathology at Duke University School of Medicine, to its Board of Directors. In addition, OncoSec's co-founder, Avtar Dhillon, M.D., has stepped down as chair of the Company's Board and current board member, Margaret R. Dalesandro, Ph.D., has assumed the role of chair.
"We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Lyerly, who is an internationally recognized expert in cancer therapy and immunotherapy, to the OncoSec Board," said Daniel J. O'Connor, OncoSec's President and Chief Executive Officer. "We look forward to his guidance and expertise during this very important time as we advance our lead product candidate, TAVO™, in late-stage clinical trials, including our ongoing pivotal KEYNOTE-695 study for checkpoint resistant metastatic melanoma and phase 2 KEYNOTE-890 program for triple negative breast cancer."
"I've been impressed with TAVO's preclinical data in HER2 breast cancer models through my work with OncoSec at Duke University," said Dr. Lyerly. "I see significant opportunity for OncoSec's IL-12 plasmid delivery technology across a variety of tumor types and welcomed the chance to join the Company's Board. I'm eager to be more involved in the development of TAVO and the potential to bring this life-changing therapy to cancer patients."
Dr. Herbert Kim Lyerly is the George Barth Geller Professor of Cancer Research, professor of surgery, immunology and pathology, and director of the surgical sciences applied therapeutics section at Duke University, and former director of the Duke Comprehensive Cancer Center. He is an internationally recognized expert in cancer therapy and immunotherapy, has published over 300 scientific articles and book chapters, and has edited ten textbooks on surgery, cancer immunotherapy and novel cancer therapies. He serves on the editorial board of 12 scientific journals.
Dr. Lyerly was appointed in 2008 by President George Bush to serve on the National Cancer Advisory Board, which oversees the National Cancer Institute, where he served until 2014. He has served as chair of the Cancer Centers Subcommittee and served on the Global Health Subcommittee of the National Cancer Advisory Board. He has served on the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Council of Councils, and on the board of the NIH Office of AIDS Research. He has also been a member of the scientific advisory boards of Susan G. Komen and the Burroughs Wellcome Foundation.
He is a highly sought-after consultant and advisor and has served on the Cancer Center's external advisory boards for the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, University of Michigan, University of Chicago, University of Alabama, University of Arizona, Boston University and Purdue University. He has served as an advisor to the University of Washington and Case Western Reserve Clinical and Translational Science Institutes.
"As a co-founder of OncoSec, it has been a pleasure to help build the Company to its current stage of intellectual property and clinical progress," said Dr. Dhillon. "With Dan O'Connor's leadership, and a strong board and management backed by the financial support and resources of China Grand Pharmaceuticals and Sirtex Medical, the Company is strongly positioned and in very capable hands to complete its next leg of growth."
"Dr. Dhillon's service on our Board has been very insightful and critical to our success to-date," Mr. O'Connor added. "The Board and management wish to profoundly thank our co-founder and former chair, Dr. Avtar Dhillon, for his many years of service to OncoSec as well as his generous leadership in advancing the development of DNA immunotherapy. We sincerely wish him the best in his future endeavors. We are also extremely grateful to have our current board member, Dr. Dalesandro, step up as chair of our Board of Directors."
Dr. Dalesandro brings more than 25 years of drug development experience in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and diagnostics industries. She currently serves as the President of Brecon Pharma Consulting, a full-service pharmaceutical and biotech consultancy firm. She previously served as Business Director of Corning Integrative Pharmacology. Before that, Dr. Dalesandro held an executive leadership role at ImClone Systems where she oversaw project management for the clinical development of ERBITUX® (cetuximab), making significant contributions to the sale of ImClone to Eli Lilly in 2008. Prior to that, Dr. Dalesandro served as an Executive Director at GlaxoSmithKline, managing cardiovascular, urology, and oncology drug product commercialization. Earlier in her career, she was a senior consultant at Cambridge Pharma Consultancy and a Director of Immunobiology and Diagnostic Research at Centocor.
"I'm honored to assume the role of chair at OncoSec," said Dr. Dalesandro. "The Company is making significant headway in its ongoing pivotal KEYNOTE-695 study in checkpoint resistant metastatic melanoma and I'm excited to be a part of guiding OncoSec during this critical juncture. I'm also very proud to welcome Dr. Lyerly onto our Board and look forward to receiving the benefit of his deep expertise."
About OncoSec Medical Incorporated
OncoSec Medical Incorporated (the "Company," "OncoSec," "we" or "our") is a late-stage biotechnology company focused on developing cytokine-based intratumoral immunotherapies to stimulate the body's immune system to target and attack cancer. OncoSec's lead immunotherapy investigational product candidate – TAVO™ (tavokinogene telseplasmid) – enables the intratumoral delivery of DNA-based interleukin-12 (IL-12), a naturally occurring protein with immune-stimulating functions. The technology, which employs electroporation, is designed to produce a controlled, localized expression of IL-12 in the tumor microenvironment, enabling the immune system to target and attack tumors throughout the body. OncoSec has built a deep and diverse clinical pipeline utilizing TAVOTM as a potential treatment for multiple cancer indications either as a monotherapy or in combination with leading checkpoint inhibitors; with the latter potentially enabling OncoSec to address a great unmet medical need in oncology: anti-PD-1 non-responders. Results from recently completed clinical studies of TAVOTM have demonstrated a local immune response, and subsequently, a systemic effect as either a monotherapy or combination treatment approach along with an acceptable safety profile, warranting further development. In addition to TAVOTM, OncoSec is identifying and developing new DNA-encoded therapeutic candidates and tumor indications for use with its new Visceral Lesion Applicator (VLA), to target deep visceral lesions, such as liver, lung or pancreatic lesions. For more information, please visit www.oncosec.com.
TAVO™ is a trademark of OncoSec Medical Incorporated.
Risk Factors and Forward-Looking Statements
This release, as well as other information provided from time to time by the Company or its employees, may contain forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements provide the Company's current beliefs, expectations and intentions regarding future events and involve risks, uncertainties (some of which are beyond the Company's control) and assumptions. For those statements, we claim the protection of the safe harbor for forward-looking statements contained in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. You can identify forward-looking statements by the fact that they do not relate strictly to historical or current facts. These statements may include words such as "anticipate," "believe," "could," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "may," "plan," "potential," "should," "will" and "would" and similar expressions (including the negative of these terms). Although we believe that expectations reflected in the forward-looking statements are reasonable, we cannot guarantee future results, levels of activity, performance or achievements. The Company intends these forward-looking statements to speak only at the time they are published on or as otherwise specified, and does not undertake to update or revise these statements as more information becomes available, except as required under federal securities laws and the rules and regulations of the Securities Exchange Commission ("SEC"). In particular, you should be aware that the success and timing of our clinical trials, including safety and efficacy of our product candidates, patient accrual, unexpected or expected safety events, the impact of COVID-19 on the supply of our candidates or the initiation or completion of clinical trials, the allowance by FDA of the clinical use of CORVax12 and our next-generation APOLLO generator in this or any future clinical trials, and the usability of data generated from our trials may differ and may not meet our estimated timelines. Please refer to the risk factors and other cautionary statements provided in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended July 31, 2019 and subsequent periodic and current reports filed with the SEC (each of which can be found at the SEC's website www.sec.gov), as well as other factors described from time to time in the Company's filings with the SEC.
Head of Corporate Communications
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SOURCE OncoSec Medical Incorporated
Released April 20, 2020