SAN DIEGO, July 18, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Organovo Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: ONVO), a biotechnology company focused on delivering breakthrough three-dimensional (3D) bioprinting technology, today announced that Richard A. Heyman, Ph.D. has been nominated to be elected to the Company's Board of Directors at the Annual Meeting of Stockholders scheduled to be held on August 21, 2013.
Dr. Heyman is an experienced life science executive who is currently chief executive officer of Aragon Pharmaceuticals, which he co-founded in 2009. In June 2013, Aragon announced a definitive agreement with Johnson and Johnson whereby Aragon will be acquired for up to $1 billion dollars in total transaction value. Previously, Dr. Heyman was Chief Scientific Officer at Kalypsys, Inc., where he conducted drug discovery in therapeutic areas such as metabolic diseases, pain, and inflammation. In 1999, he co-founded and served as Chief Scientific Officer of X-Ceptor Therapeutics, a company that developed compounds targeting nuclear receptors for the treatment of metabolic diseases. X-Ceptor was acquired by Exelixis in 2004. Before X-Ceptor, he was Vice President of Research at Ligand Pharmaceuticals and was project leader for multiple discovery programs, including the successful identification and development of Panretin® and Targretin®, retinoids approved by the FDA for the treatment of cancer. He was an NIH postdoctoral fellow and staff scientist at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. He received a PhD in pharmacology from the University of Minnesota and a BS in chemistry from the University of Connecticut.
"The election of Richard Heyman to our Board of Directors will be another key step forward for Organovo. Dr. Heyman has deep experience in life sciences, scientific knowledge in drug discovery, and a proven ability to guide companies to success in developing novel pharmaceuticals. These will strongly assist our efforts to strategically leverage our unique capabilities in building human models of disease," commented Keith Murphy, chairman and chief executive officer of Organovo.
"Organovo's platform technology has widespread potential application in the life sciences," Dr. Heyman said. "I look forward to the opportunity to play a role in translating this potential into real solutions for patients, clinicians, and scientists."