Press Release

Antiva Biosciences Appoints Clifford Samuel to Board of Directors

Mr. Samuel brings decades of experience from Gilead developing and commercializing global health antiviral medicines

South San Francisco, CA – April 21, 2021– Antiva Biosciences, a biopharmaceutical company developing novel, topical therapeutics for the treatment of pre-cancerous lesions caused by human papilloma virus (HPV) infection, today announced the appointment of Clifford Samuel to the company’s board of directors. Mr. Samuel brings over 25 years of commercial experience in the biopharmaceutical industry, with more than two decades at Gilead Sciences Inc. in leadership roles across sales, managed markets, and global commercial operations.

“We are pleased to welcome Mr. Samuel to our board as we advance the development of our topical products to treat cervical pre-cancers,” said Gail Maderis, President and CEO of Antiva. “Mr. Samuel’s extensive experience and relationships in low and middle-income countries (LMIC) countries will be invaluable in designing and implementing our strategy to make ABI-2280, our vaginal product to treat high-grade cervical intraepithelial neoplasias (HSIL or CIN 2,3), broadly available to women throughout the world. Mr. Samuel’s deep passion for global health and his commitment to universal patient access to novel therapies are well-aligned with our mission.”

Most recently Mr. Samuel served as the Senior Vice President, Global Patient Solutions at Gilead, which included responsibility for more than 140 countries. His career is notable for his success at achieving two goals often thought of as contradictory — increasing large-scale access to life-saving medications and creating market opportunities for companies. He spearheaded Gilead’s entry into generic licensing agreements with companies in China, India, and South Africa that created a competitive market for generic HIV and hepatitis B & C medicines. These initiatives continue to be in place, delivering medicines at tiered prices to more than 18 million people (in resource-limited countries) and adding billions of dollars in revenue for Gilead. Mr. Samuel is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering and received an honorary doctorate from the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

“Antiva’s topical therapeutic for high-grade CIN is an innovative product with the potential to greatly reduce the rate of cervical cancer incidence globally,” said Mr. Samuel. “Over 310,000 women die annually from cervical cancer, mostly in LMIC countries. A non-surgical treatment option could be a game changer in improving access to care and saving lives. I’m excited to join the Antiva board and help their team to maximize the global reach of their product.”

Antiva has made significant progress towards developing treatment for HPV-related diseases, which would prevent progression into more invasive cancers. ABI-2280, the lead product being developed for the treatment of CIN 2,3 utilizes antiviral prodrug chemistry developed by Dr. Karl Hostetler at the University of California San Diego. The science holds the potential to provide a non-surgical alternative for the treatment of CIN 2,3 that preserves women’s reproductive health, can be self-administered in the privacy of their homes, and improves access to care in underserved communities where OB/GYN resources are scarce.

ABI-2280 is a prodrug of an acyclic nucleoside phosphonate with known potent antiviral activity which works by directly blocking HPV replication and inducing apoptosis in HPV-infected lesions, while sparing normal cells. Antiva’s development expertise has produced a topical formulation that is rapidly taken up into epithelial cells, avoiding the potential systemic toxicity often seen when potent antiviral drugs are delivered systemically.

Antiva is currently conducting IND-enabling studies with ABI-2280 and plans to initiate clinical trials this summer.


Gail Maderis
Antiva Biosciences, Inc.

William Nevius
Canaan Partners