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James A. Bianco, M.D.
CTI Principal Founder, Chief Executive Officer, and Director

James A. Bianco, M.D. is the principal founder of Cell Therapeutics, Inc. and served as the Company's President and Chief Executive Officer and Director from February 1992 to July 2008. He now serves as CTI’s CEO and Director. Dr. Bianco has been responsible for securing more than $1 billion in operating capital and is the chief architect of the company’s portfolio strategy, leading the acquisition, development, and commercialization of novel agents that improve the safety and efficacy of existing standard-of-care chemotherapies or have unique mechanisms of action.

Achievements include:
  • The acquisition of Novuspharma and pixantrone; NDA currently under FDA review for pixantrone as a treatment for relapsed/refractory aggressive NHL
  • Acquisition of the polyglutamate drug delivery technology, developed as OPAXIO, being studied in ovarian, non-small cell lung, and other cancers
  • The acquisition of Zevalin®, the first FDA-approved radioimmunotherapeutic agent for the treatment of NHL; later sold allowing CTI to focus resources on pixantrone approval and potential commercialization
  • The acquisition, FDA and EMEA approval, and commercial launch of TRISENOX, a highly effective therapy for relapsed APL; later divested for an excellent return on investment
  • The acquisition of Systems Medicine and worldwide rights to brostallicin and its context of vulnerability potential for enhancing personalized medicine
  • Formation of strategic partnerships and collaborations with Novartis, TGen, Nerviano Medical Sciences, IDIS, and others
Prior to founding CTI Dr. Bianco was an Assistant Member in the clinical research division of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (FHCRC) and an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Washington. From 1990 to 1992, Dr. Bianco was the director of the Bone Marrow Transplant Program at the Veterans Administration Medical Center in Seattle. Dr. Bianco currently serves on the board of directors of Seattle Police Foundation and Marsha Rivkin Center for Ovarian Cancer Research. He received his B.S. in Biology and Physics from New York University and his M.D. from Mount Sinai School of Medicine.

Dr. Bianco received the 2005 Corporate Visionary Award from Gilda’s Club Seattle, an organization where people with cancer and their families can receive emotional and social support. “Dr. Bianco has made it his life’s mission to make cancer more treatable by pursuing less toxic and more effective chemotherapy drugs,” said Anna Gottlieb, founder and executive director of Gilda’s Club Seattle. “He also understands that people living with cancer need more than medicine. His support of Gilda’s Club Seattle is actually helping to make cancer more livable.”

And, in a region that boasts some of this nation's leading companies, James Bianco was named CEO of the Year for 2000 by Washington CEO magazine.