– USA, MA – Verastem, Inc. (NASDAQ:VSTM), focused on discovering and developing drugs to treat cancer by the targeted killing of cancer stem cells, today announced the appointment of Paul A. Friedman, M.D. to its Board of Directors.

“We are delighted to welcome Paul to the Verastem Board of Directors,” said Christoph Westphal, M.D., Ph.D., Verastem Executive Chairman. “Paul has significant development and commercialization expertise gained from leading Incyte and DuPont in the development and commercialization of many successful products. We believe his contributions will be invaluable as we strive to improve cancer care and enable a more durable clinical response for patients.”

“Verastem’s approach of targeting cancer stem cells holds significant promise for the oncology field,” said Dr. Friedman. “I look forward to working alongside the Board and management team to help Verastem navigate clinical development of its lead assets and create long term value for shareholders.”

Dr. Friedman was the Chief Executive Officer of Incyte Corporation from November 2001 until his retirement in January 2014 and oversaw the development and commercialization of Jakafi®. Dr. Friedman joined Incyte from DuPont Pharmaceuticals Research Laboratories where he served as President. Previously, he served as President of Research and Development of The DuPont Merck Pharmaceutical Company, and Senior Vice President at Merck Research Laboratories. During his career, Dr. Friedman was involved in the discovery and/or development of a number of successful pharmaceutical products, including Jakafi®, Aggrastat®, Trusopt®, Crixivan®, Sustiva®, Pedvax®, Pneumovax®, Vaqta®, Varivax® Cozaar®/Hyzaar® and Fosamax®. Dr. Friedman earned his M.D. from Harvard Medical School where he subsequently became an Associate Professor of Medicine and Pharmacology and was a practicing physician at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, College of Physicians and Surgeons. Dr. Friedman serves on the Board of Directors at Incyte (INCY), Synta Pharmaceuticals Corp. (SNTA), Durata Therapeutics, Inc. (DRTX), Auxilium, Inc. (AUXL), Cerulean Pharma, Inc. (CERU) and Gliknik, Inc. Dr. Friedman currently serves as a diplomat of the American Board of Internal Medicine and a Member of the American Society of Clinical Investigation. He has authored or co-authored over 100 scientific publications.

“Paul’s leadership and strategic expertise will be vital as we progress our compounds through late stage clinical development and prepare for upcoming clinical and regulatory milestones,” said Robert Forrester, Verastem President and Chief Executive Officer. “We want to change the way cancer is treated and welcome Paul to our team dedicated to achieving this mission.”

About Verastem, Inc.

Verastem, Inc. (NASDAQ:VSTM) is discovering and developing drugs to treat cancer by the targeted killing of cancer stem cells. Cancer stem cells are an underlying cause of tumor recurrence and metastasis. Verastem is developing small molecule inhibitors of signaling pathways that are critical to cancer stem cell survival and proliferation: FAK, PI3K/mTOR and Wnt.

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