LOS ANGELES (August 5, 2015) – Ritter Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: RTTR), a pharmaceutical company developing novel therapeutic products that modulate the human gut microbiome to treat gastrointestinal diseases, today announced that William (Bill) Merino has been retained as a senior clinical and regulatory advisor to the company. Dr. Merino has extensive experience with the U.S. and global pharmaceutical approval process, quality assurance, and quality control, having served 33 years in senior regulatory affairs positions at Warner Lambert/Parke-Davis Pharmaceuticals, Alcon Pharmaceuticals, G. D. Searle & Co. and Riker Laboratories. He joins Ritter Pharmaceuticals, Inc. as the company focuses on moving its lead product, RP-G28, which is being developed for the treatment of lactose intolerance, into advanced Phase 2b/3 clinical trials.
“Bill’s experiences, and long-standing relationships within the pharmaceutical industry, will be valuable to Ritter Pharmaceuticals as we navigate our clinical and regulatory strategies for RP-G28,” said Ira Ritter, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Ritter Pharmaceuticals. “Bill has tremendous insight into the best practice approaches to the pharmaceutical regulatory agencies, and has had a long history of success in developing key innovative strategies that have brought important therapies to market rapidly, such as Lipitor.”
Dr. Merino has served as a healthcare advisor since 2000, offering guidance and advice on clinical and regulatory affairs. Prior to that, Dr. Merino served as Senior Vice President of Worldwide Regulatory Affairs for Warner Lambert Pharmaceuticals from 1987 to 2000, and was a member of the Office of the Chairman where he helped guide decisions concerning research direction and drug development. At Warner Lambert he developed a one-year plan to expedite the registration of Lipitor in the U.S. and 20 other countries. During this time, Dr. Merino also served as President of the Regulatory Affairs Committee within the Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association, where he worked closely with senior FDA officials, and the United States Congress.
From 1985 to 1987, Dr. Merino was Director of International Regulatory Affairs for Alcon Pharmaceuticals, where he was responsible for the registration of devices and pharmaceutical drugs in international markets. Prior to that he served for 10 years as Vice President of Worldwide Regulatory Affairs at G.D. Searle & Co., where he worked with the FDA and regulatory agencies worldwide for drug registrations and approvals. From 1967 to 1975 he was the Director of Regulatory Affairs at Riker Laboratories, in charge of new drug registrations in the U.S.
Dr. Merino received his Ph.D. in Pharmacology from Purdue University.
About Ritter Pharmaceuticals
Ritter Pharmaceuticals, Inc. develops novel therapeutic products that modulate the human gut microbiome to treat gastrointestinal diseases. Ritter Pharma is advancing human gut health research by exploring the metabolic capacity of gut microbiota, and translating the functionality of these microbiome modulators into safe and effective applications. The company’s lead drug candidate, RP-G28, has the potential to become the first FDA-approved drug for lactose intolerance, a condition that affects more than one billion people worldwide.
This release may contain forward-looking statements, which express the current beliefs and expectations of Ritter Pharmaceuticals’ management. Such statements involve a number of known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause the company’s future results, performance or achievements to differ significantly from the results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Any statements contained herein that do not describe historical facts, including but not limited to, statements regarding Dr. Merino’s expected contributions to Ritter Pharma as a Senior Clinical and Regulatory Advisor and are forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those discussed in such forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are made only as of the date hereof, and the company undertakes no obligation to update or revise the forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.