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HaemaLogiX welcomes former Australian Federal Minister for Health Professor the Hon Greg Hunt to the company board as Non-Executive Director

SYDNEY, May 20, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — HaemaLogiX Ltd, a clinical stage biotech developing novel immunotherapies for patients with blood cancers and B-cell diseases, is pleased to announce the appointment of Professor the Hon Greg Hunt, former Australian Federal Minister for Health, to the HaemaLogiX Board as a Non-Executive Director. This appointment marks the first corporate directorship that Prof Hunt has accepted since completing his period as Minister for Health.

As the Federal Minister for Health from 2017 to 2022, Prof Hunt oversaw Australia’s response to the global COVID-19 pandemic. He established telehealth as a permanent and universal centrepiece of Medicare, Australia’s publicly funded universal healthcare scheme. In addition, Prof Hunt reformed private health and established long-term plans for mental health, aged care, medical research and primary care and listed over 2,000 new and amended medicines for public access.

As Minister for Industry, Innovation & Science, Prof Hunt laid the foundation for the Australian Space Agency. As Minister for the Environment, he established the Emissions Reduction Fund, the Green Army, the $1 billion Reef Trust and helped lead Australia’s negotiations for the Montreal Protocol update and Paris Climate Change Accord. For his work as Environment Minister, Prof Hunt was named Best Minister in the World at the World Government Summit in 2016.

Outside of his political career, Prof Hunt holds academic appointments with world-class institutions including the University of Melbourne and University College, London. Prof Hunt is also the Chair of the CARDIO4Cities Accelerator Steering Committee under Novartis Foundation, and Chair of the Turner Institute for Mental Health at Monash University.

On his decision to join the Board, Professor Hunt said, “HaemaLogiX tackles an unmet treatment need through innovative science which is recognised by world-leading scientific voices. Through my career, I have seen first-hand the invaluable benefits that immunotherapy and other emerging therapies can bring to patients. As we continue to advance our clinical trials (and subject to those trials) there is great hope for safer and more effective treatments which may be made available for patients with multiple myeloma and other conditions,” said Prof Hunt.

“Working with this well-respected team was also a very exciting prospect. HaemaLogiX is led by an impressive senior executive and board. The Scientific Advisory Board is notable for its internationally-renowned researchers, medical professionals, and academics,” said Prof Hunt.

Established in 2014, HaemaLogiX is an Australian biotech company specialising in developing immune-based treatments to improve outcomes for patients battling blood cancers such as multiple myeloma, and B-Cell diseases. The company has identified unique therapeutic targets and developed antibody-based treatment strategies to change the course of related diseases.

Damian Clarke-Bruce, CEO and Managing Director of HaemaLogiX, said that the synergy between the company’s research focus and Prof Hunt’s passion for enhanced patient outcomes and innovation in science, makes him a strong addition to the board. “We’re thrilled to welcome Greg to our company. He brings a wealth of advisory experience and knowledge to HaemaLogiX, with an equal commitment to seeing new treatments reach patients and the market.”

HaemaLogiX is the first and only company, of which we are aware, developing antibody therapy focused on the novel targets kappa myeloma antigen (KMA) and lambda myeloma antigen (LMA). KMA and LMA are found on the surface of cancer cells and not on normal cells in patients with multiple myeloma and AL amyloidosis, two diseases with limited treatment success and no effective cure.

The company’s antibody clinical trial programs targeting KMA and LMA are conducted in partnership with global leaders in haematology at Alfred Health and the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre (Peter Mac). Validated and guided by these pioneering research institutions, HaemaLogiX runs first-in-class clinical programs.

Led by Professor Andrew Spencer from the Alfred, a published Phase 2b efficacy study for the KappaMab program demonstrated an 83% overall response rate in multiple myeloma patients, combined with a 46% reduction in risk of death compared to the matched case control group, without delivering any increased adverse effects for the patients. Two patients from this study have remained on therapy for more than 4 years following their initial treatment.

Haemalogix and Peter Mac are actively progressing the manufacturing stage of their collaborative CAR-T development program. The team plans to initiate the first CAR-T Phase 1 clinical trial targeting KMA on malignant plasma cells. This trial is in relapsed/refractory myeloma patients with KMA-positive bone marrow plasma cells and whose disease is progressing in spite of prior standard of care treatments.

“Science is always evolving. Through our identification of unique novel antigens, HaemaLogiX technology and multiple therapeutic vehicles provide new options for patients. Greg further links us internationally with key industry stakeholders. As we move to expand our presence into the US, we are excited by this and ready for the next step of our company’s growth,” said Clark-Bruce.

Non-Executive Chairman, Dr John Cullity said: “Greg represents a significant addition to our Board. As we further our clinical achievements, we look forward to working closely with Greg to amplify our presence within the Australian life science sector in addition to accessing global audiences as we scale up HaemaLogiX.”

Media Contact
Jane Lowe
+61 411 117 774
jane.lowe@irdepartment.com.au

Evelyn Yang
+61 432 871 726
evelyn.yang@irdepartment.com.au 

About HaemaLogiX Ltd 

Formed in 2014, HaemaLogiX is a public unlisted biotech company researching antibody therapies for multiple myeloma.

Multiple myeloma is a haematological (blood) cancer of plasma cells (B cells) that can cause focused damage to a patient’s bone marrow. Multiple myeloma is considered treatable but generally incurable.

The HaemaLogiX team has a wide range and depth of experience in antibody research, nonclinical & clinical development, manufacturing and commercialisation. The Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) members are internationally recognised experts in monoclonal antibody therapies and haematology.

Our current research and clinical trial partners are global leaders in multiple myeloma and AL Amyloidosis therapy. HaemaLogiX is located in Sydney, Australia with clinical trials coordinated in Melbourne, Victoria and an evolving presence in the USA.

www.haemalogix.com

About Professor Greg Hunt

Greg is a highly experienced former Cabinet Minister in the Australian Government, having served as Australia’s Minister for the Environment, Innovation and Health across three major portfolios over almost nine years. He advises a wide range of businesses and not for profits in the areas of innovation, leadership, strategic planning, health and the environment.

As Minister for Health from 2017 to 2022, Professor Hunt oversaw an annual budget of $132 billion, 17 portfolio agencies and 7,000 staff. Prior to that, Prof Hunt was Minister for Industry, Innovation & Science (2016-2017) and Minister for the Environment, Australian Government (2013-2016). He was first elected to the Parliament in 2001, serving as the Federal Member for Flinders, a seat that he went on holding for the subsequent two decades until his retirement in 2022.

Professor Hunt was appointed Honorary Enterprise Professor in the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Services and the Faculty of Business and Economics at the University of Melbourne in December 2022 and Honorary Professor at University College, London in February 2024. Greg is also the inaugural Chair of the Advisory Council for the Turner Institute for Brain and Mental Health at Monash University and Chair of the Novartis Foundation’s CARDIO4Cities Accelerator Steering Committee.

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