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Arena Pharma Finance Chief Hoffman To Leave Company

DOW JONES NEWSWIRES Arena Pharmaceuticals Inc. (ARNA) said its Chief Financial Officer Robert Hoffman has taken a new position in the health-care industry and will leave the company after it reports its full-year 2010 results. Hoffman is a veteran of the biopharmaceutical company, having served as CFO since December of 2005 and having been with the company since 1997. "Robert has built a strong finance team at Arena, and we are focused on ensuring a smooth transition when he departs next month," said President and Chief Executive Jack Lief. Arena said Jennifer Bielasz and Carolyn Felzer will "continue to play key leadership roles in Arena's finance department" in the interim. Arena in January said it planned to cut its U.S. work force by about one-fourth, or 66 employees, as the company continued to focus on regulatory approval of its proposed diet drug lorcaserin. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration had rejected the drug in October because of questions about its effectiveness, as well as the drug's association with breast-tumor growth in female rat studies. Shares of Arena closed at $1.66 and were inactive after hours. The stock has fallen 46% in the past year. -By Nathan Becker, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-2855; nathan.becker@dowjones.com;

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