Telik Announces New Board of Director Members to Oversee Reinvigorated Cancer Therapy Pipeline Resulting from the Recent Merger with MabVax Therapeutics, Inc.

Aug 11, 2014, 09:00 ET from Telik, Inc.

SAN DIEGO, Aug. 11, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Telik, Inc. (OTCQB: TELK), a clinical stage oncology drug development company, which recently merged with MabVax Therapeutics, Inc. on July 8, 2014, announced the appointment of six new members of the board of directors to help guide the company and its management in developing an expanded product development pipeline post-merger.

"We are pleased to be able to attract such an outstanding new slate of board members who have both strong scientific backgrounds and demonstrated corporate leadership success at public life sciences companies," stated company president and CEO David Hansen.  "We are proud to acknowledge our new board members are associated with leading edge research institutions and academia in our field of interest related to novel therapies using cancer vaccines and antibodies.  Moreover, they have compiled excellent track records of success with significant scientific contributions credited to their research." 

Continued Hansen, "Our board now has new members who are experienced business leaders who have led public life science companies as well as played central roles in financing their growth. We believe that our new board brings the critical experience and technical knowledge required to build a successful growth company and is an important first step in executing on our plan to emerge as a public company."

About the New Board Members

J. David Hansen has served as MabVax's President, Chief Executive Officer, and Member of its Board of Directors since co-founding MabVax in 2006. Mr. Hansen is an experienced biopharmaceutical executive with more than 30 years of industry experience. From 1998 to 2006, Mr. Hansen was a corporate officer of Avanir Pharmaceuticals, where he held the titles of Vice President of Commercial Development, Senior Vice President of Corporate Development, and President and Chief Operations Officer of the Avanir Subsidiary Xenerex Biosciences. Prior to 1999 Mr. Hansen served in multiple roles at Dura Pharmaceuticals including National Sales Director, Director of Marketing, and Director of Business Development, and at Merck & Co. (Schering-Plough), Key Pharmaceuticals, and Bristol Myers Squibb.

Philip O. Livingston, M.D. is a co-founder and has been a member of MabVax's Board of Directors since 2008.  Dr. Livingston has served as MabVax's Chief Science Officer since 2012. He received his MD degree from Harvard Medical School and was Professor of Medicine in the Joan and Sanford Weill Medical College at Cornell University and Attending Physician and Member of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, or MSKCC, where he treated melanoma patients and ran the Cancer Vaccinology Laboratory research lab for over 30 years until his retirement from MSKCC in 2011. Dr. Livingston's research focused on: identification of suitable targets for immunotherapy of a variety of cancers, construction of polyvalent conjugate vaccines specifically designed to augment antibody responses against these targets, and identification of optimal immunological adjuvants to further augment the potency of these vaccines.

Jeffrey V. Ravetch, M.D., Ph.D. has been a member of the MabVax Board of Directors since early 2014.  Dr. Ravetch has served as the Theresa and Eugene Lang Professor at the Rockefeller University and Head of the Leonard Wagner Laboratory of Molecular Genetics and Immunology since 1997.  Dr. Ravetch, received his undergraduate training in molecular biophysics and biochemistry at Yale University, earning his B.S. degree in 1973. Dr. Ravetch continued his training at the Rockefeller University—Cornell Medical School MD/Ph.D. program, earning his doctorate in 1978 in genetics and in 1979 he earned his M.D. from Cornell University Medical School. Dr. Ravetch was a member of the faculty of MSKCC and Cornell Medical College, where he focused on the mechanisms by which antibodies mediate their diverse biological activities in vivo.  He is a member of National Academy of Sciences (2006), the Institute of Medicine (2007), a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2008) and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (2009).

Kenneth M. Cohen has been a member of the MabVax Board of Directors since mid-2014.  Mr. Cohen has been a member of the Board of Directors of Adamis Pharmaceuticals Corporation from 2011 to present. He is an advisor to companies, entrepreneurs and investors in the life sciences area. He was a co-founder of Somaxon Pharmaceuticals and served as its President and Chief Executive Officer from 2003 through 2007 and continued as a director until 2008. From 1996 to 2001, he was President and Chief Executive Officer of Synbiotics Corporation, a diagnostics company. From 1995 to 1996, Mr. Cohen was Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Canji Incorporated, a human gene-therapy company, until its acquisition by Schering-Plough Corporation in 1996. Prior to joining Canji, he was Vice President of Business Affairs at Argus Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Vice President of Marketing and Business Development for LifeCell Corporation. Mr. Cohen began his career at Eli Lilly and Company in 1978.  He received an A.B. in biology and chemistry from Dartmouth College and an M.B.A. from the Wharton School of The University of Pennsylvania.

Paul V. Maier has been a member of the MabVax Board of Directors since mid-2014.  Mr. Maier has been a member of the Board of Directors of Apricus Biosciences, Inc. from 2012 to present.  Mr. Maier served as the Chief Financial Officer of Sequenom, Inc. from 2009 to July 2014  Prior to joining Sequenom, Mr. Maier served as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Ligand Pharmaceuticals, Inc. from 1992 until 2007, where he helped build Ligand from a venture stage company to a commercial, integrated public biopharmaceutical organization. Prior to joining Ligand, he spent six years in various management and finance positions at ICN Pharmaceuticals. Mr. Maier received his M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and a B.S. from Pennsylvania State University.

Jim J. Antonopoulos is a Principal in Canaccord Genuity's Investment Banking Group. Mr. Antonopoulos works primarily in the Life Sciences sector, representing pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. Over the past six years, he has focused on sourcing and supporting the execution of public and private financing engagements as well as advising companies with respect to mergers and acquisitions. Mr. Antonopoulos received concentrations in Finance and Economics from Babson College in 2004 and received his juris doctorate from Villanova University School of Law in 2007.

Michael M. Wick, M.D., Ph.D. has served as the Company's Chairman of the Board of Directors from 2000 to July 2014. Dr. Wick served as the Company's Chief Executive Officer from 1999 to July 2014 and as its President from 1998 to July 2014. Dr. Wick served as the Company's Chief Operating Officer from 1997 until 1998, and as Executive Vice President, Research and Development, from 1997 until 1998. He has been a member of the Board of Directors since December 1997. Prior to joining the Company in 1997, Dr. Wick was Senior Vice President of Research for CV Therapeutics, Inc., a public biotechnology company, from 1995 until 1997. Dr. Wick served as Executive Director of oncology/immunology and clinical research at Lederle Laboratories from 1990 until 1995. Dr. Wick began his career at Harvard Medical School, where he served as an Associate Professor from 1981 until 1994 and Chief of the Melanoma Clinic and Laboratory of Molecular Dermatological Oncology at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute from 1980 until 1992. Dr. Wick holds a Ph.D. degree in Chemistry from Harvard University and an M.D. degree from Harvard Medical School.

Forward Looking Statements

This press release contains "forward-looking statements" regarding matters that are not historical facts, including statements relating to the board of directors of the Company, and merger with MabVax Therapeutics, Inc.  Because such statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements.  Words such as "anticipates," "plans," "expects," "intends," "will," "potential," "hope" and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements.  These forward-looking statements are based upon current expectations of the Company and involve assumptions that may never materialize or may prove to be incorrect.  Actual results and the timing of events could differ materially from those anticipated in such forward-looking statements as a result of various risks and uncertainties.  Detailed information regarding factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from the results expressed or implied by statements in this press release relating to the Company may be found in Telik's periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the factors described in the section entitled "Risk Factors" in its annual report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2013 and in the Proxy Statement dated July 25, 2014, as amended and supplemented from time to time.  The parties do not undertake any obligation to update forward-looking statements contained in this press release.


This communication does not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any securities or a solicitation of any vote or approval. In connection with the proposed transaction between MabVax and Telik, INVESTORS AND SECURITY HOLDERS OF TELIK ARE URGED TO READ FORM 10-K FOR THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED DECEMBER 31, 2013 AND IN THE PROXY STATEMENT DATED JULY 25, 2014, AS AMENDED AND SUPPLEMENTED FROM TIME TO TIME AND OTHER DOCUMENTS THAT WILL BE FILED WITH THE SEC CAREFULLY IN THEIR ENTIRETY WHEN THEY BECOME AVAILABLE BECAUSE THEY WILL CONTAIN IMPORTANT INFORMATION.  Investors and security holders will be able to obtain free copies of these documents and other documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC") by Telik through the website maintained by the SEC at Copies of the documents filed with the SEC by Telik will also be available free of charge on Telik's website at  These documents can be obtained free of charge from the sources indicated above.

SOURCE Telik, Inc.