Amylin Dissidents Win Board Seats, Targeted Genetics’ Troubles Raise Gene Therapy Concerns, Celladon Eyes Partnership, & More San Diego Life Sciences News

Xconomy San Diego — 

The big news in the San Diego biotech community this week came from the boardroom instead of the laboratory. Dissident shareholder factions elected representatives to the boards of both San Diego-based Amylin Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: AMLN)and Biogen Idec, the Cambridge, MA, biotech that has a significant local presence.

Amylin’s founding CEO Howard “Ted” Greene, who also is the company’s biggest individual shareholder, may have played a key role in influencing the recent board election. Greene told me he’s optimistic about the outcome, in which a dissident faction of Amylin shareholders gained two board seats and ousted the chairman and lead outside director.

—Meanwhile, in Cambridge, MA, representatives of billionaire investor Carl Icahn claimed victory yesterday in their proxy contest with Biogen Idec (NASDAQ: BIIB) by winning two of four board seats in a recent shareholder election. The company adjourned the annual shareholder meeting without announcing the official results, however.

[Editors note: A previous version of the Targeted Genetics item incorrectly reported that Robin Ali presented results of his research in San Diego.  He did not attend the meeting]

—The potential loss of Seattle’s Targeted Genetics (NASDAQ: TGEN), which is struggling to avoid bankruptcy, will make it harder to bring new gene therapy treatments to market, according to Robin Ali, a University College London researcher.  At the American Society of Gene Therapy meeting in San Diego last week, a colleague of Ali’s presented clinical trial results from Ali’s experimental gene therapy treatment for a rare, genetic form of blindness that was supported by Targeted Genetics. “If they were to close,” Ali told Xconomy’s Denise Gellene by email, “it would leave a gap in the market that would take time to fill.”

—Celladon CEO Krisztina M. Zsebo told Denise at the American Society of Gene Therapy annual meeting that the San Diego gene therapy startup is in discussions with several pharmaceutical companies and expects to announce a … Next Page »

Single PageCurrently on Page: 1 2