LEXINGTON, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sideris Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biotechnology company developing therapeutics for the treatment of transfusional iron overload diseases, today announced the appointment of Gregory I. Berk, M.D., as its President and Chief Medical Officer. As the Company’s most senior operating executive, he will also join its Board of Directors. Dr. Berk assumes the role of President of Sideris as the company is rapidly advancing its lead product candidate, SP-420, into human clinical trials for iron overload diseases.
In October 2013, Sideris announced that it successfully completed a $32 million Series A equity financing. The investment was led by MPM Capital, including MPM’s SunStates Fund. Also participating in this financing were Hatteras Venture Partners and Osage University Partners.
“We are extremely pleased that Greg, who is a distinguished and proven biotechnology leader with strong experience in developing therapeutics, has become Sideris' President and Chief Medical Officer,” noted Ansbert K. Gadicke, M.D., member of Sideris’ Board of Directors and Managing Director of MPM Capital. “Greg’s strong technical and leadership skills in managing clinical programs will be a great asset as the company prepares SP-420 to enter clinical development."
"I am excited to take on the opportunity at Sideris as the company accelerates the clinical development of SP-420 for treating iron overload diseases," said Dr. Berk. "Over the next few months, we will be building the Company’s team to execute on our exciting clinical development plan and business strategy."
Prior to joining Sideris, Dr. Berk was Chief Medical Officer at BIND Therapeutics, Inc., where he led the clinical development of its oncology focused programs, including Phase 2 programs for both non-small cell lung cancer and metastatic castrate-resistant prostate cancer. Prior to BIND, he held senior clinical positions, including Chief Medical Officer, at a number of emerging biotechnology companies, including Intellikine LLC, Celgene, Inc., Abraxis Bioscience, Inc. and SuperGen, Inc. Dr. Berk obtained his medical degree from Case Western Reserve University, and completed his internship, residency, and fellowship in internal medicine, hematology, and medical oncology, at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University and New York Presbyterian Hospital, where he also served as a faculty member from 1989-2004. During this time, Dr. Berk served as an investigator on several industry-sponsored and cooperative group clinical trials, including the pivotal trials for Gleevec® and Avastin®.
Sideris Pharmaceuticals, Inc., is a privately held biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of therapeutics for the treatment of transfusion-related iron overload. The Company’s operations include facilities in Lexington, MA, and Gainesville, FL. For additional information please visit our website at www.siderispharma.com.
SP-420 is an orally active small molecule that selectively binds iron and removes it from the body. In animal studies, SP-420 has shown excellent tissue penetration, highly efficient iron binding and a promising safety profile. SP-420 is covered by an issued patent that has been exclusively licensed to Sideris from the University of Florida.