SAN DIEGO, Dec. 6 /PRNewswire/ -- Ceregene, Inc. today announced the promotion of Raymond T. Bartus, Ph.D., to the position of executive vice president of clinical and preclinical R&D and chief operating officer. Since joining Ceregene in 2002, Dr. Bartus has led the preclinical and clinical development efforts for CERE-120 and CERE-110, Ceregene's programs for Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease, respectively. These efforts have included overseeing the development of well-designed Phase 2 clinical trial protocols as well as the management of clinical trial sites. Dr. Bartus has also led the preclinical development efforts in our gene therapy programs that target neurotrophic factors for the treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig's disease) and ocular diseases. Dr. Bartus formerly held the position of senior vice president of clinical and preclinical R&D and chief operating officer. "We are pleased to announce Ray's well-deserved promotion today, as he has been a tremendous contributor and leader within Ceregene," stated Jeffrey M. Ostrove, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer of Ceregene. "Ray has been a key driver behind our CERE-120 and CERE-110 programs. His focused efforts have enabled us to move these promising programs through clinical development, the furthest of which-CERE-120-could enter Phase 3 trials for Parkinson's disease in 2009." Dr. Bartus, a pioneer in the neuroscience industry, is the co-developer of the Cholinergic Theory of Alzheimer's Disease -- a theory demonstrating the relevance of cholinergic neurons in the disease process of Alzheimer's disease, which is highly relevant to CERE-110, Ceregene's product candidate for Alzheimer's disease as well as the majority of drugs on the market today for Alzheimer's disease. Dr. Bartus brought nearly 30 years of neuroscience expertise to Ceregene and has built and directed several research teams at both large multi-national pharmaceutical companies and small start-up companies. Under his leadership, his groups have successfully identified and developed novel compounds, many of which have advanced through clinical development and licensure. Additionally, Dr. Bartus has maintained a strong scientific presence and continuous academic affiliations during his career, which include adjunct academic appointments and collaborations, editorial responsibility and a publication record involving approximately 250 manuscripts. Dr. Bartus is the founding editor and inaugural editor-in-chief of the scholarly journal, Neurobiology of Aging: Experimental and Clinical Research. About Ceregene Ceregene, Inc. is a San Diego-based biotechnology company focused on the delivery of nervous system growth factors for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders using gene delivery. Ceregene's clinical programs include CERE-110, an AAV2 based vector expressing nerve growth factor that is currently in Phase 1/2 studies for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, and CERE-120 (AAV2-Neurturin) which recently completed enrollment of a controlled Phase 2 study for Parkinson's disease. CERE-130 and CERE-140 are in preclinical development for ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease) and ocular disorders, respectively. Ceregene was launched in January 2001 and is a former subsidiary of Cell Genesys, Inc. (Nasdaq: CEGE). The company's investors include Alta Partners, MPM Capital, Investor Growth Capital and Cell Genesys as well as Hamilton BioVentures and California Technology Partners.
SOURCE Ceregene, Inc.