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SemBioSys announces senior management changes

CALGARY, Jan. 12 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ - The Board of Directors of SemBioSys Genetics Inc. (TSX:SBS), a biotechnology company developing protein pharmaceuticals in crop plants, today announced that current President and CEO Andrew Baum has been appointed to the new position of President and CEO of Botaneco Specialty Ingredients Inc., a SemBioSys subsidiary. James Szarko, currently the corporation's Chief Financial Officer, has been named the new President and Chief Executive Officer of SemBioSys, effective immediately. Mr. Szarko, in collaboration with the Company's internal financial team, will continue as finance lead at SemBioSys. Dr. Maurice Moloney, Company Founder and Chief Scientific Officer, Dr. Bruce Given, acting Chief Medical Officer, and Dean Brown, VP of Business Development, will all continue in their current roles with the Corporation.

"With the significant progress that we have made at SemBioSys and the aggressive growth of our Botaneco subsidiary, this change allows us to ensure that we have key leadership in these critical roles as we work to unlock the potential of both platforms in our business," said Richard Smith, Chairman of SemBioSys. "James' knowledge of our business makes him the natural successor from the Board's perspective. His outstanding leadership skills, coupled with his performance over the past four years as Chief Financial Officer of SemBioSys and sound fiscal judgment, make him the ideal candidate to lead the strong executive and management team which the Company now has in place. Also on behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to thank Andrew for his service and commitment to SemBioSys. His leadership was essential in helping us bring our plant-produced insulin forward into clinical trials and to initiate the negotiations now underway for our insulin and Apo AI candidates."

James Szarko joined SemBioSys in September 2004 as Chief Financial Officer. He has 23 years of business and leadership experience in various roles as a Chartered Accountant, management consultant and an executive. Prior to joining SemBioSys, Mr. Szarko provided consulting and financial management services to early stage growth companies primarily in the technology area. He also held a senior position with a large public company. Mr. Szarko began his career at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP where he advanced to the position of senior manager which included a three year international assignment. Mr. Szarko is currently a member of the Advancement Committee to the Board of Governors of the University of Lethbridge and has served on various boards and committees in both the profit and non-profit sectors.

"We believe with insulin and Apo AI that we have only begun to exploit the proprietary protein production platform that we have developed at SemBioSys. We recognize that it represents a major breakthrough in the production of high volume pharmaceutical products at a low cost and enables the development of molecules that would be uneconomical in other systems," said James Szarko, CA, newly appointed president and chief executive officer of SemBioSys. "We have also built a phenomenally talented team at all levels of the organization, which will enable us to succeed in these difficult markets and economic times. We shall focus our efforts on fiscal prudence and achievement of near-term development and clinical milestones within our insulin and Apo AI programs. This will enable us to partner these programs and initiate new programs to build the Company's pipeline."

"With the initiation of our clinical trial for plant-produced insulin and the progress we made at SemBioSys with MannKind, Inc. on the business development front, now is the appropriate time for me to transition to Botanceo full-time. I am excited by the opportunity to apply my entrepreneurial skills to build a strong team and grow the oilbody business at Botaneco which I believe has great potential upside to offer SemBioSys," said Andrew Baum, president and chief executive officer of Botaneco.

About SemBioSys

Calgary, Alberta-based SemBioSys is a biotechnology company developing protein-based pharmaceuticals using its proprietary protein production technology. This technology enables the production of therapeutic proteins in plant seeds by genetically enhancing the safflower plant. SemBioSys' lead pharmaceutical candidates are recombinant human insulin, which is intended to serve the rapidly expanding global diabetes market, and Apo AIMilano. Apo AIMilano is a variant of Apo AI, the major protein associated with high density lipoprotein (HDL), or "good cholesterol", whose function is to remove excess cholesterol from arteries. In addition to its pharmaceutical products, SemBioSys' subsidiary, Botaneco Specialty Ingredients Inc., is selling oleosome-based all natural products in the global personal care ingredient market. More information is available and can be accessed at

About Botaneco Specialty Ingredients Inc.

Botaneco is the global developer and marketer of innovative oleosome-based ingredients to the personal care and OTC topical markets. As a technologically driven provider of high performance, proprietary oleosome-based ingredients, Botaneco is committed to developing innovative ingredients that offer multifunctional, tangible and documented benefits to both formulators and consumers. Botaneco's head office and manufacturing facility is located in Calgary, Canada and its satellite office in Bensalem, PA. More information is available and can be accessed at

This press release contains certain forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, statements containing the words "believe", "may", "plan", "will", "estimate", "continue", "anticipate", "intend", "expect" and other similar expressions which constitute "forward-looking information" within the meaning of applicable securities laws. Forward-looking statements reflect the Company's current expectation and assumptions, and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties including, but not limited to, changing market conditions and market size, the acceptance of an IND by the FDA in respect of clinical studies, the submission of a CTA to the appropriate European authorities, the successful initiation and timely and successful completion of clinical studies, the fact that Apo AI is currently a development stage drug, the establishment of corporate alliances, the impact of competitive products and pricing, new product development, uncertainties related to the regulatory approval process and other risks detailed from time-to-time in the Company's ongoing filings with the Canadian securities regulatory authorities which filings can be found at Given these risks and uncertainties, readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements either as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by applicable Canadian securities laws.

SOURCE SemBioSys Genetics Inc.
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