ontyOncothyreon Inc (USA) (NASDAQ:ONTY), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the development of therapeutic products that can improve the lives and outcomes of patients with cancer, today announced that Robert L. Kirkman, M.D., has retired as president and CEO and as a member of the Board of Directors, effective January 11, 2016. Oncothyreon’s Board of Directors has appointed Christopher S. Henney, Ph.D., D.Sc., the company’s chairman, to serve as interim CEO while the company conducts a comprehensive search for a new CEO.

“We remain on track to initiate a potentially pivotal Phase 2 clinical trial of ONT-380 in combination with Xeloda® (capecitabine) and Herceptin® (trastuzumab) early this year,” said Dr. Henney. “Our development and regulatory teams are focused on bringing this important medicine to the market for advanced-stage breast cancer patients as soon as possible.”

Dr. Henney has served as the chairman of the Board for Oncothyreon since September 2006 and has been a member of the Board of Directors since March 2005. Previously Dr. Henney co-founded three major publicly held U.S. biotechnology companies, Immunex, ICOS and Dendreon, and held a seat on the board of directors and executive positions at each company, including serving as the chairman and CEO of Dendreon from 1995 to 2003. Dr. Henney currently serves on the board of directors of Cyclacel Pharmaceuticals, Anthera Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Prothena Corporation.

“Because ONT-380 addresses such a serious unmet need for HER2-positive breast cancer patients with CNS metastases and should therefore be a major value driver for this company and its shareholders, we plan to move expeditiously to identify a permanent CEO that will take development of ONT-380 to the next level. We thank Bob for all he has done since joining in 2006, particularly licensing and developing ONT-380 to this critical point, and wish him well in his future endeavors,” said Ted W. Love, M.D., member of Oncothyreon’s Board of Directors.

Additionally, Oncothyreon has appointed two new members to its Board of Directors, Mark Lampert and Gwen Fyfe, M.D. Mr. Lampert brings extensive biotechnology and finance experience to the board. He is the founder of BVF Partners L.P., affiliates of which, including the Biotechnology Value Fund, L.P., have been shareholders of Oncothyreon since 2011. Dr. Fyfe previously served as vice president of Genentech’s oncology development group and later as vice president, Avastin Franchise Team at Genentech.

“I believe ONT-380 has enormous potential to improve the lives of women suffering from HER2-positive breast cancer, especially those with metastases to the brain. Currently there are no drugs approved to help these patients,” said Dr. Fyfe. “I consider it a privilege to join the Oncothyreon board in order to help bring this important drug to patients.” (Original Source)

Shares of Oncothyreon closed last Friday at $1.76, down $0.06 or -3.30%. ONTY has a 1-year high of $4.69 and a 1-year low of $1.41. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $2.60 and its 200-day moving average is $3.12.

On the ratings front, Oncothyreon has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report issued on December 23, Jefferies Co. analyst Gena Wang initiated coverage with a Buy rating on ONTY and a price target of $4, which represents a potential upside of 127.3% from where the stock is currently trading. Separately, on December 9, Cantor Fitzgerald’s Mara Goldstein reiterated a Hold rating on the stock and has a price target of $3.

According to TipRanks.com, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Gena Wang and Mara Goldstein have a total average return of -23.2% and -6.5% respectively. Wang has a success rate of 30.0% and is ranked #3343 out of 3610 analysts, while Goldstein has a success rate of 33.3% and is ranked #3355.

Oncothyreon Inc is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company. It develops and commercialize synthetic vaccines & small molecules that treat the lives & outcomes of cancer patients.