Galectin Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: GALT) (“the Company”), the leader in developing carbohydrate-based therapeutic compounds to inhibit galectin proteins for therapy of liver fibrosis and cancer, today announced entering into a five-year consulting agreement with world-renowned expert in liver fibrosis, Dr. Scott Friedman of the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. He will advise the Company on its scientific programs, clinical trials and the landscape of therapies for liver fibrosis.
“Dr. Friedman is one of the world’s foremost authorities on liver fibrosis and its therapy, whose work and perspectives have shaped the world’s current view of the disease,” said Dr. Peter Traber, President, Chief Executive Officer and Chief Medical Officer, Galectin Therapeutics, Inc. “We look forward to his guidance and contributions as we develop a new class of therapeutics for the treatment of liver fibrosis.”
“Galectins appear to play a significant role in the pathogenesis of liver fibrosis, a potentially fatal disease with no efficacious therapies,” commented Scott Friedman, M.D., Mount Sinai School of Medicine. “However, preclinical data on the Company’s galectin inhibitors show very promising activity in the prevention and even reversal of liver fibrosis. Based on the potential of galectin inhibition to treat fibrotic liver disease, I am enthusiastic to join with Galectin Therapeutics as we work to develop potential new therapies for this highly prevalent and serious disease.”
Dr. Friedman is Professor of Medicine, Chief of the Division of Liver Disease and Dean for Therapeutic Discovery at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. In his recently appointed position as Dean, he oversees an innovative program of drug discovery and development within an academic setting in partnership with biotech and pharmaceutical partners, a novel program within an academic institution. Dr. Friedman has performed pioneering research into the underlying causes of scarring, or fibrosis, associated with chronic liver disease, which affects millions worldwide. He was the first to isolate and characterize the hepatic stellate cell, which is the key cell type responsible for scar production in liver. He has written definitive reviews, delivered authoritative lectures and consulted extensively to industry, the NIH and FDA on the pathogenesis of liver fibrosis, including therapeutic approaches. He will be awarded the International Recognition Prize from the European Association for the Study of Liver Diseases in Barcelona on April 20, 2012, and is the past recipient, in 2003, of the International Hans Popper Prize awarded to the outstanding liver researcher in the world under the age of 50.