SAN DIEGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: ARNA) today announced changes to the Company’s Board of Directors. Garry Neil, MD, has been appointed Chair of the Board. Additionally, Nawal Ouzren has been appointed as a new Board member.
“These changes in our Board leadership will help position Arena for the growth we anticipate and mark an important inflection point in our progress,” said Amit D. Munshi, President and CEO of Arena. “Garry Neil has served on the Board for the past four years, providing exceptional leadership for our scientific direction. As a physician with extensive industry experience, his insight into successfully translating scientific discoveries into marketable drugs will shape our approach going forward.”
Dr. Neil has served on our Board of Directors since February 2017. He serves as the Chief Scientific Officer of Cerecor, Inc., a publicly held biotechnology company focused on translating genetic discoveries into novel therapies to improve the lives of children and adults with life altering diseases, a position he has held since Cerecor’s February 2020 merger with Aevi Genomic Medicine, Inc., a biotechnology company with the same focus, where Dr. Neil had served as Chief Scientific Officer since September 2013. Prior to joining Aevi Genomic Medicine, Dr. Neil was a Partner at Apple Tree Partners, a life science private equity firm, from September 2012 to September 2013, and held a number of senior positions in the pharmaceutical industry, including most recently as Corporate VP of Science & Technology at Johnson & Johnson from November 2007 to August 2012. Prior to these roles, Dr. Neil served as Group President at Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceutical Research and Development, VP of R&D at Merck KGaA/EMD Pharmaceuticals, and VP of Clinical Research at AstraZeneca and Astra Merck. Dr. Neil holds a BS from the University of Saskatchewan and an MD from the University of Saskatchewan College of Medicine. He completed postdoctoral clinical training in internal medicine and gastroenterology at the University of Toronto. Dr. Neil also completed a postdoctoral research fellowship at the Research Institute of Scripps Clinic. He served on the Board of GTx, Inc., a publicly traded biopharmaceutical company focused on cancer and other serious medical conditions, until its merger with Oncternal Therapeutics in March 2019. Dr. Neil is the Founding Chairman of TransCelerate Biopharma, Inc., a non-profit pharmaceuticals industry R&D consortium, and a past member of the TransCelerate Board. He also serves on the Board of the Reagan Udall Foundation and previously served on the Board of Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and on the Science Management Review Board of the NIH. Dr. Neil is also the past Chairman of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association (PhRMA) Science and Regulatory Executive Committee and the PhRMA Foundation Board.
“The appointment of Nawal Ouzren to the Board strengthens our Board leadership capabilities, and I am delighted to have the opportunity to work with her,” commented Dr. Neil, newly appointed Chair of the Arena Board of Directors. "Nawal brings broad based management experience including in operations and manufacturing, with both large and small biopharmaceutical companies. We are fortunate to have someone with her experience join the Board as we move toward commercial launch."
Ms. Ouzren brings 20 years of leadership and expertise across a range of areas, including clinical development, operations, manufacturing, quality, and commercialization. She currently serves as Chief Executive Officer and Member of the Board at Sensorion SAS (ALSEN.PA), a publicly traded biotechnology company based in Montpellier, FR. Prior to joining Sensorion, she served as Group Vice President, Rare Genetic Diseases at Shire International GmbH. In that role she led a cross-functional organization including clinical development, R&D, and global marketing. Before Shire, Ms. Ouzren held various positions at Baxalta from 2014 to June 2016 when Baxalta was acquired by Shire. During her career, Ms. Ouzren also held roles of increasing responsibility across multiple functions at Baxter BioScience and General Electric. In addition to her Board role at Sensorion, Ms. Ouzren serves on the Board of Inventiva (Euronext Paris and Nasdaq: IVA), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company. Ms. Ouzren holds a Master of Science Degree in Chemical Engineering from the Université de Technologie de Compiègne, France.
“Since 2016, we have continued to evolve the Board of Directors to provide effective guidance and oversight as the company has continued to grow. These new Board appointments will help steer Arena Pharmaceuticals toward our next stage of growth. I look forward to working with Garry and Nawal,” commented Mr. Munshi.
About Arena Pharmaceuticals
ARENA Pharmaceuticals is a team with a singular purpose – deliver our important medicines to patients.
In a rapidly changing global market, we work with a sense of urgency every day to understand the needs of all our stakeholders, identify bold, sometimes disruptive, ideas to get our medicines to patients, and relentlessly execute until it’s done.
ARENA - Care More. Act Differently.
Certain statements in this press release are forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Such forward-looking statements include, without limitation, statements about Dr. Neil’s and Ms. Ouzren’s expected contributions, Arena’s purpose, work, ideas, and execution. For such statements, Arena claims the protection of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual events or results may differ materially from Arena’s expectations. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements include those disclosed in Arena’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These forward-looking statements represent Arena’s judgment as of the time of this release. Arena disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements, other than as may be required under applicable law.