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Orexigen® Therapeutics, Inc. Announces Upcoming Departure of Chief Financial Officer
Date:2/17/2011

SAN DIEGO, Feb. 17, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Orexigen® Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq: OREX) announced today the upcoming resignation of Graham Cooper, senior vice president, Finance, CFO and treasurer. Mr. Cooper, who has been with Orexigen for over four years, has decided to leave the Company for personal reasons.  He has been commuting from the San Francisco Bay Area since accepting the CFO role in 2006.  Mr. Cooper will remain in his current role at Orexigen until the reporting of the Company's year-end results and the filing of its Annual Report on Form 10-K with the SEC for the year ended December 31, 2010.

The Company intends to name Jay Hagan, senior vice president, Corporate Development and Strategy, as acting-CFO and transition the financial operation responsibilities to him.  Jay joined the company in May 2009 after 10 years at Amgen.  He was instrumental in helping Orexigen secure the partnership with Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America for Contrave® (naltrexone Sustained Release (SR)/bupropion SR).  Since joining the Company to lead Corporate Development in 2009, Mr. Hagan has taken on increased responsibility, leading the Corporate Communications and Technical Operations functions at Orexigen.

"We are very grateful to Graham for his dedication and many contributions to Orexigen, and we wish him great success in the future," said Michael Narachi, president and CEO of Orexigen. "Graham has built a strong finance team at Orexigen, which will enable a smooth transition."

Steve Moglia, senior director of Financial Reporting and controller, and Judy Fox, assistant controller will continue to play key leadership roles in Orexigen's Finance department. Mr. Moglia joined Orexigen in 2008 and is responsible for managing all financial reporting, Sarbanes-Oxley compliance, stock administration and tax compliance activities. Prior to joining Orexigen, Mr. Moglia served as the director of SEC Reporting and Compliance at Biosite, Inc. Mr. Moglia is a certified public accountant (inactive) in the state of California.  Ms. Fox joined Orexigen in 2007 and is responsible for accounting, financial management, 401(k) and other accounting related administrative functions. Prior to joining Orexigen, she served as assistant controller at Diversa Corporation. Ms. Fox received her MBA from California State University, San Marcos.

About Orexigen Therapeutics

Orexigen Therapeutics, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the treatment of obesity. The Company's lead product, Contrave®, has completed Phase 3 clinical trials and has received a Complete Response Letter from the FDA for its New Drug Application.  The Company is in the process of determining the next steps for Contrave.  The Company's second product, Empatic™, has completed Phase 2 clinical development.  Each product candidate is designed to act on a specific group of neurons in the central nervous system with the goal of achieving appetite suppression and sustained weight loss, through combination therapeutic approaches. Further information about the Company can be found at www.orexigen.com.

Forward-Looking Statements  

Orexigen cautions you that statements included in this press release that are not a description of historical facts are forward-looking statements. Words such as "believes," "anticipates," "plans," "expects," "indicates," "will," "intends," "potential," "suggests," "assuming," "designed" and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These statements are based on the Company's current beliefs and expectations. These forward-looking statements include statements regarding Mr. Cooper's departure from the Company, Mr. Cooper's role with the Company until his departure, the transition of the financial responsibilities to Mr. Hagan, the continuing roles of other members of the finance department and the next steps for Contrave. The inclusion of forward-looking statements should not be regarded as a representation by Orexigen that any of its plans will be achieved. Actual results may differ from those set forth in this release due to the risk and uncertainties inherent in the Orexigen business, including, without limitation: the uncertainty of the FDA approval process and other regulatory requirements; Orexigen's ability to demonstrate that the risk of major adverse cardiovascular events in overweight and obese subjects treated with Contrave does not adversely affect the product candidate's benefit-risk profile; the potential for early termination of the collaboration agreement between Orexigen and Takeda; the costs and time required to complete additional clinical, non-clinical or other requirements prior to any resubmission of an NDA; the therapeutic and commercial value of Contrave; Orexigen's ability to attract and retain key personnel; Orexigen's ability to maintain sufficient capital; and other risks is included under the heading "Risk Factors" in Orexigen's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q, which we intend to file with the Securities Exchange Commission this week and will be available from the SEC's website (www.sec.gov) and on our website (www.orexigen.com) under the heading "Investor Relations." All forward-looking statements are qualified in their entirety by this cautionary statement. This caution is made under the safe harbor provisions of Section 21E of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.


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SOURCE Orexigen Therapeutics, Inc.
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