SAN DIEGO, California, July 17, 2018 – Neurana Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a specialty pharmaceutical company focused on the treatment of neuromuscular conditions, today announced the appointment of Craig Thompson as President and CEO. Craig brings over 25 years of executive, commercial and marketing experience in the biotech and pharmaceutical industry to Neurana.
Prior to Neurana, Craig served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Anthera Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Previously, Craig served as Chief Operating Officer of Tetraphase Pharmaceuticals, Inc., where he oversaw the development and implementation of the marketing, access and reimbursement and sales strategy, as well as business development and commercial manufacturing for the company. Prior to Tetraphase, he was Chief Commercial Officer for Trius Therapeutics, Inc., which was acquired by Cubist Pharmaceuticals, Inc. for more than $700 million. Earlier in his career, Craig served in various commercial and marketing roles of increasing responsibility at Pfizer Inc. and Merck and Co, Inc. Craig holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from McMaster University and an M.B.A. from the University of Notre Dame.
David F. Hale, Chairman of Neurana, stated, “Craig is an outstanding leader with the track record and skills to successfully lead the development of tolperisone, Neurana’s novel, patented skeletal muscle relaxant for the treatment of acute, painful muscle spasms without sedation. We believe Craig will add significant value to our team as we prepare to initiate a Phase 2 dose ranging clinical study to evaluate the safety and efficacy of tolperisone in patients with acute, painful muscle spasms of the neck and back.”
“I am pleased to join Neurana as President and CEO,” said Craig. “I look forward to working with the board and management team to advance the development of tolperisone to treat acute, painful muscle spasms. If approved, tolperisone has the potential to be the first skeletal muscle relaxant without sedation, thus potentially improving patients’ professional and personal lives.”
Neurana has also appointed Toni Foster as Senior Vice President of Medical Operations and Program Management. Toni has over 25 years of progressive clinical development and project management experience including international management of over 50 clinical drug trials from first-in-human Phase 1 trials to large, complex global Phase 3 trials. Toni was most recently Executive Vice President, Development Operations at Sanifit, Inc. and has held senior clinical and operational positions at Orexigen Therapeutics, Inc., PRA International, BioVascular, Inc., La Jolla Pharmaceutical Co., PAREXEL Corporation, and Quintiles, Inc.
Neurana recently completed a $60 million Series A financing to further develop tolperisone, a novel, patented skeletal muscle relaxant for the treatment of acute, painful muscle spasms without sedation. The financing was led by Sofinnova Ventures and included participation from New Leaf Venture Partners, H.I.G. BioHealth Partners, Longitude Capital and MagnaSci Ventures.
Tolperisone is approved and widely used in Europe and Asia for the treatment of neuromuscular conditions, and it has been shown to be effective in treating these conditions without sedation, which is a side effect commonly seen with other drugs in this category. It has not been available in the U.S. due to an impurity that was higher than ICH Guidelines. Neurana has an exclusive license from Sanochemia AG to develop and commercialize a patented composition of tolperisone which meets ICH Guidelines in North America.
The Company is preparing to commence a Phase 2 dose ranging clinical trial to further demonstrate the safety and efficacy of tolperisone in subjects with acute, painful muscle spasms of the neck and back.
About Neurana Pharmaceuticals
Neurana Pharmaceuticals is a private company focused on the treatment of neuromuscular conditions, such as acute, painful muscle spasms of the neck and back and spasticity. The company is currently beginning a Phase 2 clinical trial on the company’s lead compound tolperisone. For additional information please visit us at neuranapharma.com.
Chief Financial Officer
Neurana Pharmaceuticals, Inc.