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Epitomics Appoints Dr. Zhiqiang An as Chief Scientific Officer

BURLINGAME, Calif., Dec. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Epitomics, Inc., the world's sole provider of humanized rabbit monoclonal antibodies for therapeutic use, today announced the appointment of Zhiqiang An, Ph.D. as Chief Scientific Officer. Dr. An comes to Epitomics from Merck Research Laboratories, where he was Director of Biologics Research. He has over 12 years of experience in drug discovery and development in the biotech and pharmaceutical industries, focusing on therapeutic antibody discovery, humanization and affinity maturation, preclinical and clinical development.

Epitomics, exclusive maker of RabMAb(R) monoclonal antibodies, is the commercial supplier of rabbit monoclonal antibodies, with customers around the world, including major biotechnology/pharmaceutical companies and academic research laboratories. With several recently issued industry-changing patents, Epitomics has established its proprietary RabMAb as a unique antibody technology with an excellent IP position. The addition of Dr. An further sets the stage for Epitomics to move aggressively into the human antibody therapeutic market starting with major pre-clinical work on multiple targets in 2009.

"Dr. An brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in antibody discovery, which he will leverage with Epitomics' strong technologies and innovation to generate a pipeline of best-in-class antibody therapeutics focusing on clinically proven targets for broad therapeutic indications. We are delighted that he joins the executive management team at such a decisive stage of the company's development," said Dr. Guo-Liang Yu, CEO of Epitomics.

"RabMAb(R) is a novel class of monoclonal antibodies which possess unique biological properties, including ultra-high affinity, diversity in epitope recognition, and high target specificity. Epitomics provides me with the opportunity to expand the healthcare promises of biologics by developing RabMAb as a major therapeutic antibody discovery platform. We have embarked on a journey to bring truly widespread antibody therapy to patients around the world," said Dr. Zhiqiang An.

Prior to joining Epitomics, Dr. An played a major role in the creation of Merck's biologics research department including the establishment of their antibody technology platform. In his tenure at Merck, Dr. An and his team initiated a large number of antibody discovery programs in diverse therapeutics areas. As a result, multiple antibodies were identified as development candidates and are currently at various stages of development.

Dr. An started his biotech/pharmaceutical career at Millennium Pharmaceuticals where he established one of the very first programs attempting biocombinatorial natural products drug discovery using microbial molecular genetics and engineering approaches. Dr. An is a frequently invited speaker at scientific conferences and various academic settings and has authored numerous patents, journal articles, review papers, and books, including 2006's "Handbook of Industrial Mycology" and a comprehensive treatise entitled "Therapeutic Antibodies - from Theory to Practice," which will be published in early 2009. He received a B.S. in Biology from Shanxi Agricultural University, an M.S. in Biology from Beijing Agricultural University, and a Ph.D. in Plant Pathology from University of Kentucky, Lexington. Dr. An had his postdoctoral training at University of Wisconsin-Madison.

About Epitomics

Epitomics, Inc., an emerging biotechnology company, is dedicated to developing breakthrough monoclonal antibody technology for research, diagnostic and therapeutic applications. The Company utilizes a unique and proprietary RabMAb(R) (Rabbit Monoclonal Antibody) technology which produces antibodies with superior binding affinity and bioactivity in a wide variety of biological assays. Epitomics, Inc. ( is headquartered in Burlingame, California, and operates a wholly owned subsidiary in Hangzhou, the People's Republic of China.

SOURCE Epitomics, Inc.
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