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Astellas Adds Two Key Senior Executives at Agensys, Inc.

SANTA MONICA, Calif., Dec. 1, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Agensys, Inc. ("Agensys"), a subsidiary of Astellas (Tokyo:4503,"Astellas") has announced that Frank P. Hudson has been appointed vice president of finance, while Wolfgang Noe, Ph.D., has been named vice president of process sciences and manufacturing.

"Frank and Wolfgang each bring a wealth of experience from the biopharma industry to their respective positions," said Sef Kurstjens, M.D., Ph.D., president and chief executive officer of Agensys. "Frank's experience in research and development finance is exactly what we were looking for in our candidates, and Wolfgang's record in preclinical and clinical drug development brings additional strength to our operations. We are looking forward to their contributions at Agensys."

Astellas acquired Agensys in 2007. Based in Santa Monica, Calif., Agensys is the company's center of antibody product discovery and development operations. A state-of-the-art research and development facility is scheduled for completion in 2013.

Agensys has a rich pipeline that includes four monoclonal antibody products in clinical trials: (1) AGS-1C4D4, directed to Prostate Stem Cell Antigen (PSCA), a target for prostate, pancreatic, and bladder cancers; (2) ASG-5ME, Agensys' first antibody-drug conjugate (ADC), directed to AGS-5, a target in multiple epithelial tumors; (3) AGS-16M8F, an ADC developed for the treatment of metastatic renal cancer; and (4) AGS-22M6E, an ADC developed for multiple solid tumors to include breast, bladder, lung, and pancreatic cancers. Agensys' preclinical pipeline encompasses over 10 different monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) programs. Both ASG-5ME and AGS-22M6E are co-developed with Seattle Genetics.

Hudson joins Agensys from the Mannkind Corporation where he served as vice president of finance since 2007. During a career in the pharmaceutical industry spanning more than 20 years, Hudson headed fiscal management for research and development operations from genetics research through clinical development whose total annual spending exceeded $1.5 billion.  He also has extensive experience within commercial operations and business development.  Hudson holds an MBA from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University and is a certified public accountant and certified internal auditor. At Agensys, Hudson will be responsible for finance, procurement and information technology.

Noe holds a doctorate in biochemistry from Eberhard-Karl University in Tubingen, Germany. He joins Agensys from Biogen-Idec, where he most recently served as vice president of strategic development and technical alliances. He began his career with Boehringer-Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals in Germany and continued with Biogen-Idec as vice president of bioprocess development for seven years and then vice president of strategic alliances and technical development. As vice president of manufacturing and process sciences at Agensys, Noe will be responsible for manufacturing development and manufacturing of clinical and preclinical drug supplies.

About Agensys
Agensys, Inc., an affiliate of Astellas Pharma Inc., is developing a pipeline of therapeutic fully human monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) to treat solid tumor cancers. The MAb product pipeline is generated by Agensys' diverse portfolio of proprietary, clinically relevant cancer targets that encompass 14 types of solid tumors. Agensys' target portfolio and related products are protected by a large patent estate. The company has full capabilities to generate, develop and manufacture antibody products. Agensys is progressing a pipeline of both naked and antibody-drug conjugated (ADC) therapeutic antibodies, directed at a variety of cancer indications, including those of the prostate, kidney, pancreas, ovary, bladder, lung, colon, breast and skin. ADC products are based on drug platform technologies developed by Seattle Genetics. Agensys is developing a growing pipeline of clinical stage functional MAbs and ADC products.

About Astellas
Agensys is a subsidiary of Astellas Pharma Inc., located in Tokyo, Japan, a pharmaceutical company dedicated to improving the health of people around the world through the provision of innovative and reliable pharmaceuticals. Astellas has approximately 16,800 employees worldwide. For more information on Astellas Pharma Inc., please visit the company website at  


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