FREMONT, CA--(Marketwire - Aug 31, 2011) - Ardelyx, Inc. today announced it has appointed Mr. Kaufmann to the newly created position of Chief Business Officer. Mr. Kaufmann's role will include business and corporate development, licensing, and strategic planning. Mr. Kaufmann is formerly the CEO of Allostera and Celmed BioSciences.
"Mark's deep understanding of the biotechnology business, coupled with his substantial experience at the most senior levels in business development and planning will serve Ardelyx well during our next phase of corporate development," said Mike Raab, Chairman and CEO of Ardelyx. "We are excited to have Mark join the team and are looking forward to his leadership in establishing partnerships for Ardelyx as we advance our products."
Mr. Kaufmann has over twenty years of experience in the biopharmaceutical industry in both the U.S. and Canada in business and corporate development roles. Most recently, Mr. Kaufmann was President and CEO of Allostera Pharma Inc., a venture-backed, preclinical company focused on autoimmune diseases, where he raised $17 million to develop the company's products. Prior to joining Allostera, Mr. Kaufmann was President and CEO of Celmed BioSciences where he was responsible for raising funds and selling the company in a deal worth over $40M to a European biotechnology company, Kiadis Pharma.
Prior to his role as CEO, he was Chief Operating Officer at Celmed with responsibility for the operations and corporate development of the Company including the progression of Celmed's three products into Phase I/II human clinical testing, the development of a new business plan for Celmed and its early merger with NewBiotics Inc. Prior to joining Celmed, Mr. Kaufmann was Vice-President Corporate Development at Nexia Biotechnologies Inc. in Montreal where he was responsible for building Nexia's biopharmaceutical business, including product development and licensing agreements. He was previously Chief Financial Officer of Conceptis Technologies Inc., a medical media and education company, and prior to that, Mr. Kaufmann worked for five years with MedImmune, Inc, located in Maryland, as Director of Planning and Analysis, where he led the strategic planning and contributed to the development of MedImmune's commercialization strategy.
Mr. Kaufmann holds an MBA from the University of Michigan School of Business and a BA in Biochemical Sciences from Harvard University.
Ardelyx develops novel, first-in-class oral therapeutics to correct mineral metabolism and metabolic disorders. The Company's molecules, whose systemic exposure is severely restricted, target transporters and receptors, modulating the uptake of nutrients or inducing secretion of key hormones to produce a therapeutic benefit in patients. The Company's non-systemic products act from within the intestines to avoid potential side effects that could occur with systemic exposure. The Company's lead product, RDX5791, a minimally-absorbed, orally administered NHE3 sodium transport inhibitor, is being developed both for constipation-predominant irritable bowel syndrome (IBS-C) and for prevention of excess dietary sodium absorption, a new treatment modality for high blood pressure. RDX5791 is in phase 2 for IBS-C and a dose-ranging/regimen study for inhibition of excess dietary sodium absorption. Ardelyx is also developing RDX002, a minimally-absorbed, orally administered NaP2b phosphate transport inhibitor for the inhibition of phosphate absorption in patients with chronic kidney disease, and RDX009, a minimally-absorbed, orally administered TGR5 agonist for the treatment of type 2 diabetes through direct induction of intestinal incretins such as GLP-1 and PYY. Both RDX002 and RDX009 are in preclinical development. To date, Ardelyx has raised $56M in venture and angel funding since it was founded in 2007. Ardelyx is located in Fremont, California. For more information, visit Ardelyx's website at www.ardelyx.com.