SAN FRANCISCO, May 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Sofinnova Ventures, a venture firm
investing in early stage information technology and life sciences companies,
today announced that Harold E. "Barry" Selick, PhD has joined the firm as a
Venture Partner. Selick has held scientist and senior executive positions
with several successful biotechnology companies, including Affymax, Protein
Design Labs, Anergen and Camitro.
With the addition of Selick, Sofinnova Ventures will increase its
investment activity in biotech platform and drug discovery companies. The
firm's investments in biotechnology include AlgoRx, Actelion, David
Pharmaceuticals, Exhale Therapeutics, KaloBios, InterMune Pharmaceuticals,
Novocea and Seattle Genetics.
"We are bringing Barry on board to give even more strength to our life
science investing," commented Michael Powell, PhD, a Managing Director of
Sofinnova Ventures. "His scientific expertise will enable him to distinguish
the most promising biotechnology companies for Sofinnova to invest in, and his
strong operational background will make him perfectly suited to take on
interim management roles for our young start-ups."
"I am very excited to be joining such an accomplished team of investors
and entrepreneurs and am looking forward to contributing my own experience in
helping to strengthen and expand Sofinnova's portfolio of innovative and
inspiring biotechnology ventures," said Selick.
Selick co-founded Camitro in January 1999. As President and CEO of the
company, he recruited a world-class team of scientists and entrepreneurs,
oversaw the creation and commercialization of Camitro's technology for
pharmaceutical drug discovery, established two corporate sites in Menlo Park,
California and Cambridge, the United Kingdom, and initiated and led the
Camitro team in negotiations that resulted in its acquisition by the drug
discovery company Arqule in 2001 for $95 million.
Prior to Camitro, Selick was Vice President, Research for Affymax Research
Institute, the wholly owned drug discovery technology development center for
Glaxo Wellcome. He directed activities in combinatorial chemistry-based drug
discovery, with particular emphasis on the development of technologies for
improving the process of lead optimization. He was also Senior Scientist,
Head of Molecular Biology at Anergen, Inc. (acquired by Corixa) and a Staff
Scientist at Protein Design Labs, where he was co-inventor of the technology
underlying the creation of fully humanized antibodies. He applied this
technology to the creation of the "Smart anti-TAC" antibody, which was
successfully developed and commercialized by Roche as "Zenapax", for treating
kidney transplant rejection.
Selick was a Damon Runyon-Walter Winchell Cancer Fund Fellow with
Professor Bruce Alberts (currently President of the National Academy of
Sciences) and an American Cancer Society Fellow at the University of
California, San Francisco, School of Medicine. He earned a Ph.D. in Biology
and a BA in Biophysics from the University of Pennsylvania.
About Sofinnova Ventures
Sofinnova Ventures is part of a global organization with offices in France
and the United States. With a U.S. base in San Francisco, Sofinnova was
founded in 1972 and is one of the oldest venture capital firms. The firm
emphasizes a diversified investment strategy through financing seed and
early-stage companies in the communications, information technology and life
science sectors. Sofinnova's mission is to create value by providing
entrepreneurs with the collective resources, experience and network necessary
to build early-stage companies into profitable businesses. With strong ties
to Europe's leading financial, technology and venture organizations, Sofinnova
helps U.S. companies rapidly enter Europe's growing markets, and European
companies to develop a strong presence in U.S. markets. Historically,
Sofinnova Ventures has been associated with leading companies such as Biogen,
Collagen, Genentech, Printronix, Tandon and Tandem Computers. More recently,
Sofinnova has invested in Actelion, Aviron, InterMune Pharmaceuticals,
Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Phone.com, Premisys, Nishan Systems and
Tumbleweed. For more information, visit www.sofinnova.com.
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SOURCE Sofinnova Ventures