Dendright Announces Key Strategic Hire

September 3, 2013.

Dendright Pty Ltd, a biopharmaceutical company developing novel immune tolerizing drugs for the treatment of autoimmune disease, today announced the appointment of Helen Roberts to the position of Chief Executive Officer. Ms Roberts’ appointment follows the recent announcement of Dendright’s exciting and continuing collaboration with Janssen to support the preclinical development of a highly novel product for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.  

"We are very pleased to welcome Helen to Dendright," said Ranjeny Thomas, MBBS, FRACP, MD, Founding Director and Chief Technology Officer of Dendright. "Her extensive experience across drug development programs with a therapeutic basis in immune-modulation and her demonstrated leadership and management skills in business and product development, will add tremendous value to the company. Helen joins Dendright at an optimal time, strengthening our management team and alliance management capabilities, as we continue to progress our pipeline, including CurcusomeTM-RA in our recently announced collaboration with Janssen Biotech, Inc."

Dendright said that Ms Roberts had more than 20 years’ experience in drug development and commercialization roles in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry.  She holds qualifications in science and business and her experience includes roles of increasing seniority with local and international companies such as Implicit Bioscience Ltd, Agenix Ltd, Merck, Sharp & Dohme and Lederle Laboratories, now part of Pfizer.  She will continue to provide product development support in an ongoing role with Implicit Bioscience where she has worked for six years as Vice President, Antibody Therapeutics Development and previously as Vice President, Business Development.

"I am excited to be joining Dendright and such a high quality team as the company transitions to its next stage of corporate growth," said Ms Roberts. "The next stage will require a dedicated execution of our manufacturing, preclinical and regulatory plans and I look forward to helping the team achieve these goals as well as building the company’s franchise in autoimmunity. Dendright’s technology is potentially ‘disruptive’ changing the paradigm of care in autoimmune management and we are very focused on ensuring that its therapeutic value is realised so patients derive maximal benefit.” 

Dendright Chairman Craig Belcher, PhD MBA, said the appointment would lead the company “through its next phase of growth with the Janssen collaboration and reflects the strategic importance of our expansion initiative to establish Dendright as a global leader in tolerizing immunotherapy for the treatment of autoimmune diseases”.

Ms Roberts holds a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Technology Sydney.

About Dendright Pty Ltd
Dendright Pty Ltd was established in 2005 and assisted by grants from the Queensland Government’s Innovation Start-up Scheme and the Australian Government’s Biotechnology Innovation Fund so that Professor Ranjeny Thomas and her team could focus on finding a way for the body’s own immune system to “re-educate” the cells that cause autoimmune diseases. Professor Thomas’ research at the University of Queensland Diamantina Institute has also been supported by Arthritis Queensland, a peak community organisation, the Australian Research Council and Australia’s National Health and Medical Research Council. In addition to the RA therapy in preclinical development, the Dendright platform technology is being used to develop new therapies for type 1 diabetes.

Helen Roberts, CEO,

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