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Avanir Pharmaceuticals Announces Appointment of Dr. Joao Siffert as Senior Vice President Research and Development
Date:8/8/2011

ALISO VIEJO, Calif., Aug. 8, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Avanir Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: AVNR) today announced the appointment of Dr. Joao Siffert to the position of senior vice president research and development. In this newly created role, Dr. Siffert will be responsible for leading all of the company's research and development activities.

"We are thrilled to have another leader of Joao's caliber join the Avanir team," said Keith A. Katkin, president and CEO of Avanir. "His depth of medical knowledge and experience in developing novel neurologic therapeutics will be essential as we look to expand our pipeline. Joao will help propel our initiatives through both follow-on indications of NUEDEXTA and the potential in-licensing of further products to treat central nervous system disorders of high unmet need."

Dr. Siffert previously served as vice president and chief medical officer at Ceregene, Inc., a biotechnology company focused on the development of neurotrophic gene therapies for Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. Prior to this position he served as the chief medical officer at Avera Pharmaceuticals, a CNS specialty pharma company. Prior to joining Avera, Dr. Siffert held positions with Pfizer as the worldwide medical team leader of Lyrica and Neurontin focusing in areas of pain and epilepsy and as medical director for Relpax. He was instrumental in the Phase 3b/4 program development and global launch of Lyrica. Prior to Pfizer, Dr. Siffert held academic positions at Beth Israel Medical Center, where he served as director of the Adult Neuro-Oncology program, and Albert Einstein College of Medicine, where he was assistant professor of neurology. During his tenure at Beth Israel, Dr. Siffert was actively involved in clinical research of novel therapies for patients with brain and spinal cord tumors. He completed residencies in pediatrics at New York Universit
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SOURCE Avanir Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
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