IDEC Pharmaceuticals Announces New Senior Vice President of Biopharmaceutical Sciences

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(BW HealthWire) — IDEC Pharmaceuticals Corporation (Nasdaq:IDPH) today announced the appointment of Wolfgang Berthold, Ph.D., as senior vice president of Biopharmaceutical Sciences with responsibility for manufacturing operations as well as process sciences. Dr. Berthold comes to IDEC from Hoffmann-La Roche Inc., in Nutley, New Jersey, where for the past five years he was vice president of Biopharmaceuticals and served as International Advisor for all Roche pharmaceutical biotechnology projects in development.
At Nutley Dr. Berthold’s department produced the supply of protein drug candidates in early and late stages of development, including commercial manufacturing of Zenapax(R). Previously, he was involved in the launch of Actilyse(R) while heading the Biotech Process Development Group at Boehringer Ingelheim, which operates one of the world’s largest biopharmaceutical manufacturing plants.
Dr. Berthold has held numerous leadership positions in professional pharmaceutical societies in the United States and Europe. Recently, he served on the Biotech Steering Committee of the Pharmaceutical Manufacturers’ Association USA (PhRMA) as United States-European Union liaison officer. As a representative of the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industry Associations (EFPIA) in the International Committee for Harmonization (ICH) biotech working group for guidelines’ issuance, he focused on safety issues, specifically virus safety, in biotech manufacturing and product quality. The ICH guidelines are now being adopted by member countries as international standards.
“We are delighted that Dr. Berthold has joined our corporate management team,” said William R. Rohn, IDEC’s chief operating officer. “He brings more than 20 years of experience – first at Boehringer Ingelheim and then at Hoffmann-La Roche – in large-scale manufacturing of biologics, such as monoclonal antibodies. Dr. Berthold’s first priority will be to work closely with the IDEC team to further expand the company’s world-class expertise and capability in biologics manufacturing.”
At IDEC, Dr. Berthold will be responsible for providing the company with technical and administrative direction of all clinical and commercial manufacturing operations, process development, and process validation functions. Chris Burman, currently senior vice president of Manufacturing and Process Sciences, will retain responsibility for strategic planning related to IDEC’s next large scale commercial facility, which is being planned to support a variety of potential autoimmune products in the company’s pipeline. In addition, Mr. Burman will continue to oversee the company’s facilities, engineering and related functions. Both Dr. Berthold and Mr. Burman will report to Mr. Rohn.
IDEC Pharmaceuticals focuses on the commercialization and development of targeted therapies for the treatment of cancer and autoimmune diseases. IDEC’s antibody products act chiefly through immune system mechanisms, exerting their effect by binding to specific, readily targeted immune cells in the patient’s blood or lymphatic systems. IDEC Pharmaceuticals’ news releases are available at no charge through Business Wire’s News on Demand Plus. For a menu of IDEC’s current news releases and quarterly reports or to retrieve a specific release, call (888) 329-2309. On the Internet check the News Center at IDEC’s website: http://idecpharm.cdmail.biz .

The statements made in this press release contain certain forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual events or results may differ from IDEC’s expectations. In addition to the matters described in this press release, timelines for ongoing and future clinical activity are subject to change, results of pending or future clinical trials cannot be accurately predicted, and decisions by the FDA and other regulatory agencies including their determination as to whether there is sufficient clinical data and compliance with all other requirements to support product licensure, as well as the risk factors listed from time to time in IDEC’s SEC filings, including but not limited to its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 1998 and Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 1999, may affect the actual results achieved by IDEC.
IDEC Pharmaceuticals is a registered U.S. trademark of the company. The company’s headquarters is located at 11011 Torreyana Road, San Diego, CA 92121.

--30--sr/sd* ts/gt/sd CONTACT: IDEC Pharmaceuticals Corporation Vince Reardon, 858/431-8801 KEYWORD: CALIFORNIA INDUSTRY KEYWORD: MEDICAL MEDICAL DEVICES PHARMACEUTICAL BIOTECHNOLOGY MANAGEMENT CHANGES