NOVATO, Calif., April 10, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical Inc. (NASDAQ:RARE), a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of novel products for rare and ultra-rare diseases, today announced the appointment of Deborah Dunsire, M.D., to the company's Board of Directors effective April 6, 2017. Dr. Dunsire, President and Chief Executive Officer of XTuit, will serve as an independent director to Ultragenyx.
"Dr. Dunsire's experience in growing global organizations and building the commercial success of innovative therapies will be an asset to Ultragenyx as we advance our pipeline and prepare for potential commercialization," said Emil D. Kakkis, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of Ultragenyx.
"I am joining the Ultragenyx board at a pivotal time for the company, and look forward to working with the team to help bring medicines to patients with rare diseases around the world," said Dr. Dunsire.
Dr. Dunsire brings more than 25 years of management experience in the biopharmaceutical industry. Prior to joining XTuit in 2017, Dr. Dunsire was president and chief executive officer of FORUM Pharmaceuticals. From 2005 to 2008, she served as president and chief executive officer of Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Inc. During that time, she established the company as a biotechnology industry leader by focusing and driving the research and development pipeline and building the commercial capabilities of the organization. The company was acquired by Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited in 2008 for $8.8 billion, and Dr. Dunsire served as president, CEO and a board member of Millennium: The Takeda Oncology Company until 2013. Before joining Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Dr. Dunsire led the Novartis U.S. Oncology Business for more than ten years, contributing to the broad development and successful launch of a number of products including Zometa®, Femara® and Gleevec®. She also served on the board of Allergan, Inc. from 2006 to 2015.
Dr. Dunsire has received awards including the 2013 Boston CEO Conference Lifetime Achievement award, the 2011 MassBIO Innovative Leadership Award, the 2009 Healthcare Businesswomen's Association's Woman of the Year award, and the 2001 American Cancer Society Excalibur Award. She is a graduate of the medical school of the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa.
Ultragenyx is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company committed to bringing to market novel products for the treatment of rare and ultra-rare diseases, with a focus on serious, debilitating genetic diseases. Founded in 2010, the company has rapidly built a diverse portfolio of product candidates with the potential to address diseases for which the unmet medical need is high, the biology for treatment is clear, and for which there are no approved therapies.
The company is led by a management team experienced in the development and commercialization of rare disease therapeutics. Ultragenyx's strategy is predicated upon time and cost-efficient drug development, with the goal of delivering safe and effective therapies to patients with the utmost urgency.
For more information on Ultragenyx, please visit the company's website at www.ultragenyx.com.
Contact Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical Inc. Investors & Media Ryan Martins 844-758-7273