SAN DIEGO, Jan. 10, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Trius Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq:TSRX) announced today that J. Craig Thompson has been appointed to the newly created role of Chief Commercial Officer. With more than 18 years of pharmaceutical marketing and sales experience, Craig will initially be responsible for developing the commercial strategy, positioning and planning for the potential launch of torezolid phosphate, an IV and orally administered second generation oxazolidinone in Phase 3 clinical development for the treatment of acute bacterial skin and skin structure infections. Before joining Trius, Craig was Vice President of Marketing for Pfizer's Specialty Care Business Unit where he was directly responsible for the U.S. commercial strategy for products with over $1.5 billion in annual U.S. sales including the first generation oxazolidinone Zyvox ®, the anti-infectives Tygacil ®, Vfend ® and Eraxis ® as well as Rapammune ® and Relistor ®. Prior to his 7 years at Pfizer, Craig served in positions of increasing responsibility during his 12 years at Merck where he most notably worked on the commercial planning and marketing activities for the company's anti-infectives Primaxin ®, Mefoxin ® and Cancidas ® as well as on major cardiovascular brands including Vytorin ®, Zetia ® and Zocor ®. "Craig is a key addition to our management team and we believe that his strong infectious disease background combined with his experience in launching industry blockbusters will provide Trius with valuable commercial leadership," stated Dr. Jeffrey Stein, President and CEO of Trius Therapeutics. "His success in infectious diseases is especially relevant to his newly created role at Trius. Craig launched and led Primaxin to a position of growth, led the recent re-launch of Zyvox and effectively managed the co-positioning of Zyvox and Tygacil following the Pfizer/Wyeth merger." "Trius provides a unique opportunity to launch torezolid phosphate, a best-in-class oxazolidinone, and to contribute to the development of its preclinical portfolio," stated Craig Thompson. "I look forward to joining this exciting company, leading the commercialization of torezolid phosphate into a successful anti-infective drug and creating value for our customers and shareholders."