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Menlo Therapeutics Announces Senior Clinical Leadership Updates

May 7, 2018 at 8:30 AM EDT

REDWOOD CITY, Calif., May 07, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Menlo Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ:MNLO), a late-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of serlopitant for the treatment of pruritus associated with various underlying dermatologic conditions and for refractory chronic cough, today announced a realignment of roles including the promotion of a key member of the clinical development team. 

Paul Kwon, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist and Menlo’s Chief Medical Officer for the last two years, will become Menlo’s Chief Scientific Officer.  Dr. Kwon will be responsible for leading the scientific strategy of the serlopitant clinical program, exploring potential new indications and overseeing early-stage clinical trials of serlopitant to support the anticipated new drug application. 

Mary Spellman, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist who has served as Menlo’s Senior Vice President, Clinical Development for the last year, will be promoted to Chief Medical Officer and will manage the planning and execution of late-stage clinical programs for serlopitant.  

“As Menlo expands to support the continued development of serlopitant, we are realigning the roles among our senior clinicians to more effectively leverage their experience and strengths,” said Steve Basta, Menlo’s Chief Executive Officer.  “We have two experienced dermatologists on the Menlo leadership team and believe this new structure will streamline our activities and enable Paul and Mary to focus on key development activities.”

Paul Kwon, M.D. has served as Menlo’s Chief Medical Officer since January 2016. Dr. Kwon previously served as Chief Medical Officer at Nora Therapeutics, a biotechnology company focused on developing therapeutics to address significant unmet needs in reproductive medicine from November 2010 to November 2015. Prior to joining Nora Therapeutics, Dr. Kwon held numerous positions at Genentech, where he was most recently head of the non‑oncology early clinical development group. Dr. Kwon earned his B.A. in Human Biology from Stanford University and an M.D. from the University of California at San Francisco. He is a diplomate of the American Board of Dermatology and a fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology.

Mary Spellman, M.D. has served as Menlo’s Senior Vice President, Clinical Development since August 2017. Previously, Dr. Spellman was an independent consultant providing executive level medical, safety and development services to multiple life sciences companies, primarily supporting novel dermatology therapy and clinical development programs from 2005 to 2017. Prior to establishing her consulting practice, Dr. Spellman was Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President, Development at Revance Therapeutics, as well as Senior Director, Medical Research, Immunology at Biogen Idec, and Vice President, Dermatology Research at Connetics Corporation. Dr. Spellman is a board‑certified dermatologist with over 30 years of clinical experience, including 20 years in the biopharmaceutical industry. Dr. Spellman received a B.S., Honors in Biology from Loyola University of Chicago and earned her M.D. from the Medical College of Wisconsin. She is a diplomate of the American Board of Dermatology and a fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology.

About Menlo Therapeutics

Menlo Therapeutics Inc. is a late-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of serlopitant, a once-daily oral NK1 receptor antagonist, for the treatment of pruritus associated with various underlying dermatologic conditions and for refractory chronic cough. The company currently has ongoing Phase 2 studies for the treatment pruritus associated with psoriasis and for the treatment of refractory chronic cough, and is preparing to initiate Phase 3 trials for the treatment of pruritus associated with prurigo nodularis.

Forward Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements, including but not limited to the potential of serlopitant to treat pruritus associated with various underlying dermatologic conditions, such as psoriasis and prurigo nodularis, or to treat refractory chronic cough, the conduct of Phase 2 clinical studies, and expectations about the start of Phase 3 clinical trials.  Such forward-looking statements involve substantial risk and uncertainties that could cause Menlo Therapeutics’ development program for serlopitant, future results, achievements or performance to differ significantly from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements.  Such risks and uncertainties include, among others, risks that the timing of enrollment or commencement of clinical trials may be delayed, the risk that subsequent trials do not replicate the results from completed clinical trials, the risk of adverse safety events, risks that the costs of clinical trials will exceed expectations and that Menlo Therapeutics will need to raise additional capital, risks of competition and the risk that Menlo Therapeutics is not able to successfully defend or protect its intellectual property.  For more information about these and other risks, see Menlo Therapeutics’ form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 28, 2018, under the heading “Risk Factors” and any subsequent current and periodic reports filed with the Securities and Exchange CommissionMenlo Therapeutics undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements.

Contact for Menlo Therapeutics: media@menlotx.com

Investor Contact: dsheel@menlotx.com

 

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Source: Menlo Therapeutics Inc.