Stock Update (NASDAQ:ZGNX): Zogenix, Inc. Expands Senior Leadership Team to Further Drive Strategic Focus on CNS Disorders and Orphan Drug Development

Zogenix, Inc. (NASDAQ:ZGNX), a pharmaceutical company developing and commercializing products for the treatment of central nervous system (CNS) disorders, announced the appointments of Gail M. Farfel, Ph.D., as Executive Vice President and Chief Development Officer, and Thierry Darcis, M.D., M.B.A., as Executive Vice President and General Manager, Europe.

“The addition of two highly experienced product development and commercial leaders in the orphan CNS disease category further advances our core strategic focus on the Company’s late-stage CNS product development pipeline,” said Stephen Farr, Chief Executive Officer of Zogenix. “We are extremely pleased to have both Gail and Thierry join Zogenix at this exciting time in the Company’s history. Gail’s diverse background in leading global product development and regulatory approvals of CNS treatments, including for epilepsy, will be enormously helpful as we execute on our core strategic focus of advancing our pipeline programs. Thierry brings a successful track record of launching rare disease products in Europeand will have a small, experienced leadership team joining him in the UK, representing clinical, regulatory and commercial disciplines. The combination of these accomplished leaders will provide Zogenix the opportunity to further develop and expand its strategic pipeline and rapidly establish the Company’s operations in Europe.”

In the Chief Development Officer role, Dr. Farfel will lead all product development activities, including clinical development and regulatory strategy. In his role, Dr. Darcis will establishZogenix’s pre-commercial presence in Europe and lead commercial operations in Europe for the anticipated launch of ZX008, an orphan drug expected to enter Phase 3 clinical studies during the fourth quarter of 2015 for the treatment of Dravet syndrome, a rare and debilitating form of epilepsy that begins in infancy. Both Dr. Farfel and Dr. Darcis will report directly to Dr. Farr, Chief Executive Officer of Zogenix.

Dr. Farfel has over 20 years of experience in leading drug development projects for multiple CNS indications, including epilepsy. Most recently, she was Chief Clinical and Regulatory Officer of Marinus Pharmaceuticals, establishing and overseeing clinical, medical and regulatory strategies for adult and pediatric seizure disorders, including a pediatric epileptic orphan disease. Previously, Dr. Farfel was Vice President, Therapeutic Area and Head forNeuroscience Clinical Development and Medical Affairs at Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, where she oversaw a portfolio of products including Gilenya® for multiple sclerosis, Exelon® and the Exelon® Patch for Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease, and the antidepressant, agomelatine. Dr. Farfel began her career in pharmaceutical drug development at Pfizer, Inc., where she worked in Clinical Development and Global Medical Affairs, directing programs through all stages of clinical development and regulatory submissions. Dr. Farfel is the author of over 50 scientific articles in the areas of neuropsychopharmacology and drug effects, and holds a Ph.D. in Neuropsychopharmacology from the University of Chicago, where she received the Ginsburg Prize for Dissertation Excellence. Dr. Farfel also holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry from the University of Virginia.

Dr. Darcis has over 20 years of pharmaceutical industry experience in global marketing, product development and operations management. He has led European operations as General Manager for two successful rare disease-focused biopharmaceutical organizations, most recently NPS Pharmaceuticals and prior to that, Viropharma Europe. Previously, he was Vice President, Global Marketing Head and a member of the executive team at Novartis Vaccines. Prior to Novartis Vaccines, Dr. Darcis spent over five years with GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals in Belgium. Before GSK Biologicals, he worked for UCB Pharma and as a physician at the Cape Town City Council Health Care department and Tygerberg Hospital in Cape Town, South Africa, as well as H.F. Verwoerd Hospital in Pretoria, South Africa. Dr. Darcis received his M.D. from the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium; his M.B.A. from the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa; and his B.S. degree in marketing and advertising from the Solvay Business School in Brussels. (Original Source)

Shares of Zogenix closed last Thursday at $12.8 . ZGNX has a 1-year high of $18.88 and a 1-year low of $8.56. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $12.73 and its 200-day moving average is $11.69.

On the ratings front, Zogenix (NASDAQ: ZGNX) has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report issued on June 19, Brean Murray Carret analyst Difei Yang maintained a Buy rating on ZGNX, with a price target of $2.50, which reflects a potential downside of -80.5% from last closing price. Separately, on May 11, Oppenheimer’s Akiva Felt maintained a Buy rating on the stock and has a price target of $2.50.

According to, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Difei Yang and Akiva Felt have a total average return of 16.6% and 32.8% respectively. Yang has a success rate of 57.6% and is ranked #314 out of 3689 analysts, while Felt has a success rate of 66.3% and is ranked #26.


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