Clearside appointments to support transition to a commercial-stage company

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Clearside Biomedical (NASDAQ:CLSD) has appointed William Humphries as the new chairman of its board and Brion Raymond to the newly created post of chief commercial officer to support Clearside’s potential transition to a commercial-stage company. 

Clearside is developing CLS-TA for suprachoroidal administration, its proprietary suspension formulation of the corticosteroid triamcinolone acetonide, for the treatment of various blinding eye diseases. 

Clearside expects to report top line data from its Phase 3 PEACHTREE clinical trial of suprachoroidal CLS-TA in its lead indication, macular edema associated with non-infectious uveitis, in the first quarter of 2018 and, if the final data are positive, anticipates filing a NDA with the FDA by the end of 2018. 

PEACHTREE is the first pivotal Phase 3 clinical trial of a drug candidate for non-infectious uveitis, in which a best-corrected visual acuity measure is the primary efficacy endpoint.  

If this trial meets its primary endpoint and marketing authorization is obtained, suprachoroidal CLS-TA can become a new paradigm for the treatment of visual impairment associated with macular edema due to non-infectious uveitis. 

Mr. Humphries succeeds Christy Shaffer, who will continue as a member of the board.

Mr. Humphries, who has served as a director of Clearside since January 2012, has more than 29 years of experience in the specialty pharmaceutical industry, with more than 26 of those years focused on product commercialization. He currently serves as EVP at Ortho Dermatologics, a division of Valeant Pharmaceuticals.

Daniel White, president and CEO of Clearside, said Mr. Humphries is accomplished in helping build commercial teams and launching new treatments. “I look forward to continuing to work with him, Christy, and the rest of the Clearside team as we pursue transformative, elegant, precise solutions to restore and preserve vision,” he added.

Clearside said Mr. Raymond would focus on the development and execution of a comprehensive commercial strategy for Clearside’s pipeline of treatments targeting sight-threatening diseases, if approved by the FDA.

He has a track record of success building out commercial capabilities, leading marketing and sales teams, and cultivating thought-leader relationships across multiple specialties.

Mr. White said Mr. Raymond’s experience brings a particularly relevant depth of knowledge of ophthalmic biopharmaceutical product launches and strong relationships in the retina community to Clearside. At Genentech, for example, he was a key member of the team responsible for launching the blockbuster ophthalmic drug, Lucentis.