NEEDHAM, Mass., April 22, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Chiasma, Inc. (NASDAQ: CHMA), a clinical, late stage biopharmaceutical company focused on improving the lives of patients who face challenges associated with their existing treatments for rare and serious chronic diseases, today announced the appointment of Anand Varadan as Executive Vice President, Chief Commercial Officer. Mr. Varadan will lead Chiasma’s commercial strategy and operations.
“We are fortunate to have someone of Anand’s caliber join our leadership team. Anand’s prior tenure with Chiasma and his breadth and depth of relevant experience building commercial organizations and leading successful product launches will be critical to our success,” said Raj Kannan, Chief Executive Officer of Chiasma. “Anand’s strategic orientation and leadership skills will be instrumental to our growth plans as he oversees our commercial strategy to ensure that patients have access to our potential new treatment option, MYCAPSSA for adult patients with acromegaly, if approved.”
Mr. Varadan served as Chiasma’s Chief Commercial Officer until June 2016. He reengaged with the company as a strategic advisor in early 2018 and has been leading MYCAPSSA launch preparations over the last eight months. Previously, Mr. Varadan served as Executive Vice President, Chief Commercial Officer of Karyopharm Therapeutics, Inc., an oncology-focused pharmaceutical company, until July 2019 where he built their commercial organization and led preparations for the successful launch of Xpovio for multiple myeloma. Earlier in his career, Mr. Varadan held several commercial and general management leadership positions at Amgen Inc. in the U.S., E.U. and Canada, including Vice President of the $8 billionU.S. Inflammation and Nephrology Business Unit and Vice President and General Manager of all Amgen operations in Canada. He is also the Founder and President of Ignition Insights LLC, a strategic consulting firm. Mr. Varadan holds a master’s degree in business administration from the Simon Business School at the University of Rochester and a bachelor’s degree in Zoology from The George Washington University.
Mr. Varadan added, “I am honored to rejoin Chiasma as Chief Commercial Officer and look forward to working closely with the leadership team to successfully launch MYCAPSSA, if approved, and build the company by leveraging its exciting technology platform. I have been inspired by the Company’s mission to develop and commercialize alternative options to injectable therapies to provide patients with greater independence. I am pleased to join an exceptional team and help to potentially provide MYCAPSSA, if approved, to the patients that could benefit from it.”
Inducement Grant under NASDAQ Listing Rule 5635(c)(4)
In connection with the hiring of Mr. Varadan, the Compensation Committee of Chiasma's Board of Directors granted a stock option to purchase 425,000 shares of Chiasma's common stock to Mr. Varadan. The option was granted as an inducement material to Mr. Varadan’s acceptance of employment with Chiasma in accordance with NASDAQ Listing Rule 5635(c)(4). The option has an exercise price of $4.43 per share, which is equal to the closing price of Chiasma’s common stock on the grant date, April 22, 2020. The option vests over four years, with 25% of the shares underlying the option vesting on the first anniversary of the grant date and the remaining 75% of the shares underlying the stock option vesting in equal monthly installments for the following 36 months, subject to Mr. Varadan’s continued service to Chiasma through the applicable vesting dates. The option has a 10-year term and is subject to the terms and conditions of a stock option agreement between Chiasma and Mr. Varadan.
Chiasma is focused on improving the lives of patients who face challenges associated with their existing treatments for rare and serious chronic diseases. Employing its Transient Permeability Enhancer (TPE®) technology platform, Chiasma seeks to develop oral medications that are currently available only as injections. In July 2019, the company reported positive topline data from its CHIASMA OPTIMAL Phase 3 clinical trial for its octreotide capsules product candidate, conditionally trade named MYCAPSSA, for the maintenance therapy of adult patients with acromegaly in whom prior treatment with somatostatin analogs has been shown to be effective and tolerated. Prior to trial initiation, the company reached agreement with the FDA on the design of the trial through a special protocol assessment. In January 2020, the FDA accepted the company’s NDA resubmission seeking marketing approval of MYCAPSSA in the U.S. The PDUFA target action date is June 26, 2020. Chiasma is headquartered in Needham, MA with a wholly-owned subsidiary in Israel. MYCAPSSA, TPE and CHIASMA are registered trademarks of Chiasma. For more information, please visit the company’s website at www.chiasma.com.
This release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including, but not limited to, statements regarding the company’s development of octreotide capsules, conditionally named MYCAPSSA, for the treatment of acromegaly, statements regarding the timing of regulatory review and potential approval, statements concerning the timing of the FDA’s review of the NDA resubmission, statements concerning the commercial or therapeutic potential of MYCAPSSA, if approved, and statements concerning the potential commercial launch of MYCAPSSA in the United States. Such statements are subject to numerous important factors, risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the company’s control, that may cause actual events or results to differ materially from the company’s current expectations. Management’s expectations and, therefore, any forward-looking statements in this press release could be affected by risks and uncertainties relating to a number of factors, including the following: the content and timing of decisions made by the FDA, including with respect to the NDA, the company’s ability to obtain and retain requisite regulatory approvals and commercial product supply for the commercial launch of octreotide capsules in the United States, the timing and costs involved in establishing a commercial organization, and the impact the ongoing COVID-19 crisis may have on Chiasma’s business, including its expected development, manufacturing, regulatory and commercialization timelines for MYCAPSSA. For a discussion of these and other risks and uncertainties, and other important factors, any of which could cause the company’s actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see the section entitled “Risk Factors” in Chiasma’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2019 and in subsequent SEC filings. All information in this press release is as of the date of the release, and Chiasma undertakes no duty to update this information unless required by law.
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