LEXINGTON, Mass., Jan. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Genta Incorporated (Nasdaq: GNTA) today announced the election of Dr. Daniel D. Von Hoff, a distinguished cancer specialist, to its Board of Directors, effective January 12, 2000. Dr. Von Hoff is Professor of Medicine and Director of the University of Arizona Cancer Center. He is also the current President of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), the world's leading scientific organization in this field. "I have known Dr. Von Hoff for a number of years, and regard him as the world's leading expert in oncology drug development," said Dr. Raymond P. Warrell, Jr., Genta's President and CEO. "I am personally delighted by his election to the Board. Genta will benefit enormously from his unparalleled expertise as we enter the pivotal development stages for our lead compound, G3139, as well as its successors." "Having consulted for Genta in the past," said Dr. Von Hoff, "I am very pleased to be advising the company again in this new capacity. I am very familiar with G3139, which represents an exciting and highly innovative approach to improve the effectiveness of cancer treatment. Successful development of this agent may prove to be a major advance in patient care, and I look forward to assisting Genta in this endeavor." Genta is currently conducting clinical studies of G3139 in several types of cancer, including malignant melanoma, prostate and breast cancers, and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Together with a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with the U.S. National Cancer Institute, Genta has recently initiated trials in patients with small cell lung cancer, colo-rectal cancer, and acute myelocytic leukemia. The FDA recently granted Fast Track designation for G3139 when used in combination with dacarbazine for treatment of patients with advanced malignant melanoma. In developing its clinical program, Genta has focused upon using G3139 in combination with major cancer chemotherapeutic compounds, including docetaxel (Taxotere(TM); Aventis), paclitaxel (Taxol(TM); Bristol Myers Squibb), irinotecan (Camptosar(TM); Pharmacia Upjohn), and other agents. G3139 was designed to reduce the Bcl-2 protein level in cancer through an "antisense" mechanism that specifically targets the messenger-RNA produced by the bcl-2 gene. In many human cancers, the Bcl-2 protein is believed to be a major factor in inhibiting apoptosis, or programmed cell death. Bcl-2 is believed to contribute to both inherent and acquired resistance to treatment with anticancer drugs. Following is a biography of Dr. Daniel D. Von Hoff M.D.: Dr. Von Hoff graduated cum laude from Carroll College and received a M.D. from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. After internship and residency in internal medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, he completed a medical oncology fellowship at the National Cancer Institute. Dr. Von Hoff then moved to the University of Texas at San Antonio, where he rose to Professor in the Department of Medicine and the Department of Cellular and Structural Biology. In 1999, he became Director of the Cancer Center and Professor of Medicine at the University of Arizona. Among numerous awards, he has received the Frederick S. Philips Lectureship from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, the Michel Clavel Lectureship from the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC), and the Bagshawe Lectureship from the British Association for Cancer Research. In 1997, Dr. Von Hoff received the Richard and Hilda Rosenthal Foundation Award from AACR and was elected President of that organization for 1999-2000. He has been an editor of the journal, Investigational New Drugs, associate editor of Cancer Research and Clinical Cancer Research, and has served on the editorial boards of the American Journal of Medicine, Anticancer Drugs, Oncology, Annals of Oncology, and nine other scientific journals. He is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians, and has been a member of the Board of Directors of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and AACR, as well as a member of the FDA's Oncology Drug Advisory Committee (ODAC). In 1989, Dr. Von Hoff became the Founding Director of the Institute for Drug Development at the Cancer Therapy and Research Center in San Antonio. In part, this activity was used to rapidly facilitate the translation of exciting laboratory scientific advances into clinical research and patient care. In his positions, he has participated in the early clinical investigations of most of the new agents that have been approved for cancer treatment in the United States over the past 20 years, including gemcitabine, docetaxel, paclitaxel, topotecan, irinotecan, fludarabine, mitoxantrone, and dexrazoxone. He has published more than 450 papers, 120 book chapters, 750 abstracts, and several patents, primarily related to studies of new anticancer treatments. Dr. Von Hoff has also served as a key scientific advisor to a number of pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. He is a founder and co-chair of the Scientific Advisory Board of Ilex Oncology. Genta Incorporated is a biopharmaceutical company whose strategy consists of building a product and technology portfolio concentrating on cancer therapy including its Anticode(TM) (antisense) products intended to treat cancer at its genetic source. For more detailed information about Genta, please visit our web site at www.Genta.com . To receive Genta Incorporated's latest news release and other corporate documents via fax, at no cost, dial 1-800-PRO-INFO; use the Company's symbol GNTA. Or visit The Financial Relations Board's web site at www.frbinc.com . The statements contained in this press release that are not historical are forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, including statements regarding the expectations, beliefs, intentions or strategies regarding the future. Without limiting the foregoing, the words "anticipates," "believes," "expects," "intends," "may" and "plans" and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. The Company intends that all forward-looking statements be subject to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements reflect the Company's views as of the date they are made with respect to future events, but are subject to many risks and uncertainties, which could cause the actual results of the Company to differ materially from any future results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. For example, the results obtained in pre-clinical or clinical studies reported above may not be indicative of results that will be obtained in future clinical trials; Genta has not successfully completed human clinical trials of a product based on antisense technology; and delays in the completion of clinical trials as a result of delays in patient enrollment or other factors may occur. Examples of such risks and uncertainties also include, but are not limited to: the obtaining of sufficient financing to maintain the Company's planned operations; the timely development, receipt of necessary regulatory approvals and acceptance of new products; the successful application of the Company's technology to produce new products; the obtaining of proprietary protection for any such technology and products; the impact of competitive products and pricing and reimbursement policies; and the changing of market conditions. The Company does not undertake to update forward-looking statements.
SOURCE Genta Incorporated