REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Oct. 17, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- OncoMed Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq:OMED), a clinical-stage company developing novel therapeutics that target cancer stem cells (CSCs), or tumor-initiating cells, today announced the appointment of independent director Michael Wyzga to the company's Board of Directors. Mr. Wyzga will chair OncoMed's Audit Committee. "As a CEO of an emerging biopharmaceuticals company and previous CFO of one of the leading biotechnology companies in the world, Mike brings an excellent perspective to OncoMed's Board following our successful IPO," said Paul J. Hastings, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of OncoMed Pharmaceuticals. "We look forward to benefiting from his leadership and experience as we advance multiple anti-cancer stem cell therapeutics through clinical development and to commercialization independently and with our partners." Mr. Wyzga is currently President and Chief Executive Officer of Radius Health, Inc. Prior to joining Radius, Mr. Wyzga was Executive Vice President, Finance and Chief Financial Officer of Genzyme Corporation until its acquisition by Sanofi in April 2011. Mr. Wyzga joined Genzyme in 1998 and held primary responsibility for the company's financial management worldwide. He provided key leadership in the successful $20.1 billion sale of Genzyme to Sanofi, which was the second-largest acquisition in biotechnology history. Prior to joining Genzyme, Mr. Wyzga was Chief Financial Officer of Sovereign Hill Software. He previously served as Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer of CacheLink Corporation, a client/service software company. Mr. Wyzga also held management positions at Lotus Development Corporation and Digital Equipment Corporation. He received an MBA from Providence College and a BS from Suffolk University. "OncoMed is discovering and developing truly novel therapeutics, with a powerful and productive platform technology at work," said Mr. Wyzga. "With a diversified portfolio of five clinical-stage candidates, a pipeline of preclinical products and the backing of two large pharma partners, I have been impressed with the company's accomplishments to date and feel confident that they are going to achieve great things. I look forward to contributing to OncoMed's continued success."