VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Aug 12, 2005 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- PhytoMedical Technologies, Inc. (PYTO), an early stage research based biopharmaceutical company focused on the identification, development, and eventual commercialization of innovative plant derived pharmaceutical and nutraceutical compounds, today announced the appointment of Mr. Harmel S. Rayat, a current director, to the position of president and chief executive officer of PhytoMedical Technologies.
"As a result of Mr. Rayat's efforts on our behalf, we have been able to enter into a $10 million common stock purchase agreement with Fusion Capital," states Mr. Indy Panchi, the Company's former president and CEO, who remains on as a director. "This funding not only permits us to fully complete our existing research and development programs, but also allow us to establish broader business and research objectives to facilitate our goal to commercialize pharmaceutically approved products for diabetes and cachexia. We look forward to continued progress under Mr. Rayat's leadership as our new president and chief executive officer." Mr. Rayat, the Company's founder, a director and majority shareholder, will also assume the position of Chief Financial Officer and Principal Accounting Officer. PhytoMedical will seek to augment its executive management team with the addition of other qualified individuals.
Commenting on his appointment, Mr. Rayat states, "We've arrived at this point in our corporate life as a direct result of the tireless work of our collaborating scientists, Drs. Richard Anderson, Heping Cao and John Striffler, the ongoing support and hard work of our administrative staff, Jeet Sidhu, Jay Bhogal, Ranjit Bhogal, and Karley Smith, our shareholders communications representative; and, of course, the guidance of our scientific advisory board members. Now, I'm delighted to have the opportunity of leading our Company through the next phase of development, which I regard as being one of the most exciting for our shareholders and, we hope, most meaningful for the millions that suffer from diabetes or cachexia.
"Over a ten year period, a group of scientists led by Dr. Anderson, our lead collaborating scientist, isolated and characterized several polyphenolic compounds from cinnamon bark that increase sugar metabolism by a factor of 20 in test tube assays," Mr. Rayat states. "A further human study published in Diabetes Care showed that as little as one gram a day of cinnamon -- one-fourth of a teaspoon twice a day -- can lower blood sugar by an average of 18 to 29 percent. These compounds increase insulin sensitivity by activating key enzymes that stimulate insulin receptors while inhibiting the enzymes that deactivate them."
Mr. Rayat continues, "Already, the potential of this cinnamon based diabetes research has been the subject of hundreds of media stories, ranging from Forbes, Time Magazine, New York Daily News, The Boston Globe, New Scientist and many more. Our goal now is to synthesize the active components found in cinnamon, and characterize their beneficial effects in cell culture systems, animals and ultimately humans. Eventually, we hope to make available a clinically approved product that could be easily ingested as a pill or added to soft drinks or other liquids, with the end result being lower blood sugar levels through more efficient use of insulin."
"Additionally, we're also excited to be working to isolate and identify potentially active pharmacological elements found in an extract of the muira puama plant, which we refer to as BDC-03, that we believe are responsible for reducing body fat percentage, increasing lean muscle mass and lowering cholesterol in a study of growing animals," states Mr. Rayat. "For obese or overweight individuals, BDC-03's potential capacity to decrease the deposition of fat and lower cholesterol would be a vitally important therapeutic outcome. However, we believe its prospective ability to induce overall weight gain in the form of lean muscle mass may ultimately prove to be its most important attribute for individuals suffering from cachexia, a condition characterized by dramatic weight loss that afflicts 25% of all AIDS patients and upwards of 90% of all advanced cancer patients. Sadly, and what many people are not aware of, is that half of all cancer related deaths are a result of cachexia, not the cancer itself. Ascertaining BDC-03's potential applicability in this area is one of the key goals of our ongoing research and development work."
Mr. Rayat has been in the brokerage and venture capital industry since 1981. Between January 1993 and April 2001, Mr. Rayat served as the president of Hartford Capital Corporation, a company that provided financial consulting services to a wide range of emerging growth corporations. Between April 2001 through January 2002, Mr. Rayat acted as an independent consultant advising small corporations and since January 2002, he has been president of Montgomery Asset Management Corporation, a privately held firm providing financial consulting services to emerging growth corporations. Mr. Rayat has served, and continues to serve, as a director, executive officer and majority shareholder of a number of publicly traded and privately held corporations. Because Mr. Rayat will continue to engage in other activities, he will not be devoting his full-time and efforts to our business affairs.
PhytoMedical's Collaborating Scientists
Mr. Rayat concludes by saying, "As we progress into the next phase of our corporate growth and development, I believe it's important to acknowledge and recognize the scientific brilliance, dedication and monumental effort being expended by our collaborating scientists, who, in my opinion, are the very essence of our business."
Dr. Richard A. Anderson
Dr. Richard A. Anderson, a widely-published chromium and insulin expert, has been a scientist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture since 1976, first in the Vitamin and Mineral Nutrition Laboratory and then in the Nutrient Requirements and Functions Laboratory.
Dr. Anderson obtained his BA from Concordia College, Minnesota, followed by his graduate work at both North Dakota State University, Fargo and Iowa State University, Ames, where he received a Ph.D. in biochemistry. During his postdoctoral work at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Anderson studied the regulatory role of magnesium in E. coli alkaline phosphatase and developed methods to study individual metal binding sites of proteins.
Dr. Anderson's expertise and research are in the following areas:
-- Liquid chromatography to identify compounds from cinnamon to improve the actions of insulin
-- Determine mechanisms of insulin potentiating factors found in herbs, spices and yeast using in vitro, cell culture and experimental animal studies
-- Chromium and aging
-- Alterations and micronutrients and mineral status in postmenopausal women with and without HRT
-- Polymeric polyphenols in cinnamon for inhibiting tumor growth
-- Chromium, cinnamon & tea as insulin potentiators & antioxidants
Dr. Heping Cao
Dr. Cao holds a PhD in Plant Biology from Pennsylvania State University, where he specialized in biochemical and physiological characterization of numerous plants. Founded one and half centuries ago, Pennsylvania State University is ranked as America's top public university (2003-04) and boasts over $1.3 billion in endowment funds with more than $500 million in research expenditures.
During his tenure at Pennsylvania State University, Dr. Heping Cao published numerous research findings in leading scientific journals, including Journal of Plant Growth Regulation, Physiologia Plantarum, and Plant Physiology, the world's oldest and most respected international plant science journal, established in 1926 and devoted to the physiology, biochemistry, cellular and molecular biology, genetics, biophysics, and environmental biology of plants.
Dr. Heping Cao is a widely-published scientist with several dozen peer-reviewed original research articles published in 15 different journals and 40 abstracts presented at numerous research conferences. Dr. Cao has been invited to review manuscripts by editors of several prominent journals, including: Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Experimental Cell Research, Environmental Health Perspectives, and Chinese Science Bulletin.
Dr. Heping Cao's notable areas of research experience include: protein/enzyme expression, purification, structure, function, enzymology, and proteomics; biochemical genetics and metabolic pathways, including carbohydrate, lipid and RNA metabolism; and signal transduction pathways with particular expertise in tristetraprolin and brassinosteroids.
Dr. Cao has tenured at numerous, distinguished institutions, including: the National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Laboratories of Signal Transduction and Neurobiology (Research Triangle Park, NC); Iowa State University, Department of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Molecular Biology; Texas Tech University, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry; Michigan State University, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology; and Pennsylvania State University, Plant Biology Program.
Dr. Cao works at the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service Nutrient Functions and Requirements Laboratory located in Beltsville, MD.
Dr. John Striffler
Dr. John Striffler holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology (Chemistry) from California State University and an Associate in Arts degree in Zoology (Chemistry) from the College of San Mateo (San Mateo, California). Dr. Striffler earned a PhD in Physiology (Metabolism) from the University of California, Davis (UC), established in 1869 and reputed among America's foremost universities with more than 50 UC researchers awarded the National Medal of Science, the highest honor awarded to a scientist.
Throughout a career spanning forty years of scientific research, discovery, teaching, and lecturing, Dr. John Striffler has tenured at numerous, distinguished research and academic institutions, including: University of California, Department of Physiology; California State University, Department of Biology; University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology; Wright State University School of Medicine; University of Virginia, Department of Internal Medicine; and University of Maryland, Department of Physiology, and others.
Dr. Striffler's scientific investigations and findings on pancreatic perfusion, insulin clearance, insulin resistance, glucagon and glycogen, chromium and insulin, and numerous other facets of diabetes-related research have been published in leading peer-reviewed scientific journals, including: Digestive Disease and Sciences; Journal of Trace Elements In Experimental Medicine; American Journal of Anatomy; American Journal of Physiology; and Obesity Research, among others.
Dr. Striffler works at the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service Nutrient Functions and Requirements Laboratory located in Beltsville, MD.
About Phytomedical Technologies, Inc.
PhytoMedical Technologies, Inc. (PYTO), together with its wholly owned subsidiaries, is an early stage research based biopharmaceutical company focused on the identification, acquisition, development and eventual commercialization of innovative plant derived pharmaceutical and nutraceutical compounds targeting cachexia, obesity and diabetes.
Legal Notice Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
No statement herein should be considered an offer or a solicitation of an offer for the purchase or sale of any securities. This release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 that are based upon current expectations or beliefs, as well as a number of assumptions about future events. Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in the forward-looking statements and the assumptions upon which they are based are reasonable, it can give no assurance that such expectations and assumptions will prove to have been correct. The reader is cautioned not to put undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, as these statements are subject to numerous factors and uncertainties, including but not limited to adverse economic conditions, intense competition, lack of meaningful research results, entry of new competitors and products, adverse federal, state and local government regulation, inadequate capital, unexpected costs and operating deficits, increases in general and administrative costs, termination of contracts or agreements, technological obsolescence of the Company's products, technical problems with the Company's research and products, price increases for supplies and components, litigation and administrative proceedings involving the Company, the possible acquisition of new businesses or technologies that result in operating losses or that do not perform as anticipated, unanticipated losses, the possible fluctuation and volatility of the Company's operating results, financial condition and stock price, losses incurred in litigating and settling cases, dilution in the Company's ownership of its business, adverse publicity and news coverage, inability to carry out research, development and commercialization plans, loss or retirement of key executives and research scientists, changes in interest rates, inflationary factors, and other specific risks. We currently have no commercial products intended to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease. The statements contained in this press release regarding our on going research and development and the results attained by us to-date have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. There can be no assurance that further research and development, and /or whether clinical trial results, if any, will validate and support the results of our preliminary research and studies. Further, there can be no assurance that the necessary regulatory approvals will be obtained or that PhytoMedical will be able to develop commercially viable products on the basis of its technologies. In addition, other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially are discussed in the Company's most recent Form 10-QSB and Form 10-KSB filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly release the results of any revisions to these forward looking statements that may be made to reflect the events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.