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Takeda Names Head of New Global Commercial Organization
Takeda has named Marcello Agosti head of global commercial, based in Zurich. The company established the global commercial organization as part of its plans to structure operations to become more agile and customer-focused. The global commercial organization has been created to better align with the company’s business need to maximize the product value of global brands, such as Entyvio and Nesina/Vipidia through their lifecycle and to provide commercial leadership for pipeline compounds across the following therapeutic areas: gastroenterology, cardiovascular and metabolic, and central nervous system (CNS).
Mr. Agosti takes on this new role in addition to his current responsibility as area head for southern and Eastern Europe. He joined Takeda in 2008. The global commercial team is based in Zurich, Deerfield, Ill., Cambridge, Mass., and Singapore.
Dr. Michael Ehlers
Dr. John Lin
Pfizer Names new R&D Leaders
Pfizer announced today two strategic appointments in the leadership of the worldwide research and development organization. Michael Ehlers, M.D., Ph.D., has been selected as group senior VP and head of BioTherapeutics Research & Development and site head for Pfizer’s Cambridge and Boston locations.
Before joining Pfizer in 2010, Dr. Ehlers spent 12 years as the George Barth Geller Professor of Neurobiology and as a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator at Duke University. He holds M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
In addition, John Lin, M.D., Ph.D., has been selected as senior VP and chief scientific officer of Rinat.
In his expanded role as head of BioTherapeutics Research & Development, Dr. Ehlers continues to be chief scientific officer of Pfizer’s neuroscience and pain research unit, and he oversees the entire BioTherapeutics Research & Development organization. In connection with this appointment, the inflammation and immunology research unit moves to Pfizer’s PharmaTherapeutics Research & Development organization.
Dr. Lin leads Rinat, Pfizer’s biotechnology unit within the worldwide research & development organization, located in South San Francisco, Calif. Dr. Lin joined Rinat in 2002 and continued in his role when the biotechnology company was acquired by Pfizer in 2006. Since 2011, he has served as VP of experimental medicine at Rinat with responsibility for overseeing immuno-oncology and discovery and validation biology efforts with particular expertise in cellular, molecular and in vivo neurobiology. Dr. Lin received his medical and doctoral degrees from National Taiwan University and Harvard University, respectively, and also completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Genentech.
Relypsa Names Communications VP
Relypsa, a biopharmaceutical company, has appointed Charlotte Arnold to the position of VP, corporate communications. Ms. Arnold joins Relypsa with more than 15 years of experience in corporate and product communications.
Ms. Arnold joins Relypsa from Genentech, where she has worked since 2006. Most recently, she led the corporate and cross-portfolio communications team, covering a wide breadth responsibilities including policy issues, managed care, distribution and access, as well as supporting corporate branding.
Dr. Dai Chaplin
Dr. Bill Schwieterman
OXiGene Makes Senior Appointments
OXiGene, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing novel therapeutics to treat cancer, has appointed Bill Schwieterman, M.D., president and CEO. The company’s current CEO, Dai Chaplin, Ph.D., has become chief scientific officer. Both Drs. Schwieterman and Chaplin continue to serve on OXiGene’s board of directors.
Dr. Schwieterman is an experienced biotechnology executive with a deep background in clinical development and regulatory matters. From 2009 to 2014, he was chief medical officer of Chelsea Therapeutics where he led the company’s clinical development team toward the approval of droxidopa for the treatment of non-motor symptoms of Parkinson’s disease and other neurodegenerative diseases. He holds an M.D. from the University of Cincinnati.
GW Appoints President, North America and Relocates CEO to the U.S.
GW Pharmaceuticals, a biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing, and commercializing novel therapeutics from its proprietary cannabinoid product platform, has appointed Julian Gangolli as president, North America, and has relocated its CEO Justin Gover to the United States.
Mr. Gangolli was from 2004 until April 2015 president of the North American Pharmaceutical division of Allergan, with responsibility for a 1,400-person integrated commercial operation.
GW has located its U.S. operation in Southern California where Mr. Gangolli and Mr. Gover are based. GW is also continuing to expand its UK manufacturing and R&D operations in preparation for future commercialization as well as pipeline development.
Dr. Nerissa Kreher
Dr. Kevin Malobisky
Zafgen Appoints Heads of Medical and Regulatory Affairs
Zafgen, a biopharmaceutical company dedicated to significantly improving the health and well-being of patients affected by obesity and complex metabolic disorders, has named Nerissa Kreher, M.D., global head of medical affairs, and Kevin Malobisky, Ph.D., global head of regulatory.
Dr. Kreher is a physician and board-certified pediatric endocrinologist with deep academic, clinical research, and biotechnology industry experience that includes both medical affairs and clinical development in start-up environments and within large biotechnology companies. Most recently, Dr. Kreher was the global clinical development lead, neonatology, at Shire. She received her M.D. from East Carolina University School of Medicine; her M.S. in clinical research from Indiana University; and an executive MBA from Northeastern University.
Dr. Malobisky is a seasoned global regulatory affairs professional with 25 years of laboratory, clinical, and regulatory development expertise spanning devices, biologics, and small molecules. Most recently, Dr. Malobisky was a senior regulatory consultant working with the Harte Group.
He earned his master of science degree in quality assurance and regulatory affairs from Temple University School of Pharmacy, and his Ph.D. in organization and management from Capella University School of Business and Technology.
Versartis Makes Senior Appointments
Versartis, an endocrine-focused biopharmaceutical company that is developing VRS-317, a novel, long-acting form of recombinant human growth hormone (rhGH), has appointed Jay Shepard president and CEO. Mr. Shepard succeeds Jeffrey Cleland, Ph.D., who remains with the company as a senior scientific advisor to the CEO.
Mr. Shepard is a seasoned executive with more than 33 years of experience across pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and drug delivery companies. Mr. Shepard first joined Versartis as executive chairman of the board in 2014. Most recently, he has been an executive partner at Sofinnova Ventures, a healthcare focused venture capital firm, where he leveraged his industry expertise in support of the firm’s portfolio companies.
PaxVax Appoints CEO
PaxVax, a specialty vaccine company focused on travel and biodefense, has appointed Nima Farzan CEO and president. In this role, he assumes overall responsibility for PaxVax, including management of all R&D, manufacturing, and commercial operations globally. Kenneth Kelley, co-founder and former CEO, continues to serve PaxVax as a director on the company’s board of directors and as an Advanced Leadership Initiative Fellow at Harvard University focused on related global health issues.
Mr. Farzan previously served as president and chief operating officer. He joined PaxVax in September 2011 from Novartis, where he spent more than seven years in positions of increasing responsibility in pharmaceutical marketing, sales and development in both U.S. and global positions. Mr. Farzan received an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Advaxis Appoints Regulatory
Advaxis, a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing cancer immunotherapies, has appointed Fred Frullo as VP, regulatory affairs. With more than 20 years of experience in the biopharmaceutical industry, Mr. Frullo is well-versed in the development of global regulatory strategies for the supervision, review, and assembly of pharmaceutical product submission and coordination with global health authorities to obtain approvals.
Mr. Frullo oversees regulatory submissions for the company’s Lm-LLO cancer immunotherapy clinical programs, as well as combination studies involving complementary immunotherapy technologies. He leads the development and submission of all regulatory documents on behalf of Advaxis to the appropriate health agencies and coordinating joint submissions with Advaxis’s strategic partners as warranted. In this role, Mr. Frullo succeeds Ms. Chris French, who now leads the company’s compliance program.
Mr. Frullo was previously the director, global regulatory strategy at Bristol-Myers Squibb, where he was responsible for maintaining regulatory compliance for the oncology portfolio of marketed products and providing global regulatory strategy support for both life-cycle management teams and early development teams.
Dr. Peter Fusco
Dr. Stephen Haworth
Dr. Linda Tussey
VaxInnate Strengthens Senior Management Team
VaxInnate, a biotechnology firm pioneering a breakthrough vaccine technology, has made two strategic promotions and two additions to the senior development team to help drive the growth of the company’s pipeline, including its lead influenza vaccine candidates.
Linda Tussey, Ph.D., has been promoted to chief scientific officer from VP of research and development, while Bruce Weaver has been named VP of manufacturing following his time as director of process development. Peter Fusco, Ph.D., joins the company as VP of research and development, and Stephen Haworth, M.D., assumes the role of VP of clinical. Mr. Weaver, Dr. Fusco and Dr. Haworth also join the company’s senior management team.
Dr. Fusco comes to VaxInnate with more than 30 years of experience in vaccinology. During his career, he has played a major role in the development and testing of a wide range of human vaccines, including PharmAthene’s anthrax vaccine candidate, SparVax; Baxter’s human meningococcal C conjugate vaccine, NeisVac-C; and North American Vaccine’s licensed DTaP vaccine, Certiv. Dr. Fusco received his Ph.D. in biophysics and microbiology at the University of Pittsburgh. He has authored more than 90 scientific publications and posters, and is named on five U.S. patents.
Dr. Haworth has more than 25 years of global drug development experience, most recently as chief medical officer of Elusys Therapeutics. He received a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MD equivalent) from University College, University of London.
Dr. Tussey is responsible for developing the long-term clinical growth plan to enrich the company’s pipeline while also devoting resources to the ongoing influenza, dengue and C. diff programs, and leading VaxInnate’s discovery efforts.
Mr. Weaver has led Phase I cGMP manufacturing efforts during his time at VaxInnate and has developed the high-yielding E. coli fermentation process and purification methods that have become the foundation of the company’s production process.
Mr. Weaver holds master’s degrees from Tufts University and Rutgers University.
Biogen Names Chief Information Officer
Biogen has appointed Matt Griffiths as senior VP and chief information officer (CIO). Mr. Griffiths was promoted to the CIO role from his position as VP of pharmaceutical operations and corporate information technology, having joined Biogen from Dell earlier this year.
Mr. Griffiths is responsible for developing Biogen’s overall strategy for enterprise information technology (IT), including business engagement, global solution development and support, and infrastructure, while also supporting the company’s core business and growing pipeline.
Dr. Jose-Carlos Gutiérrez-Ramos
Synlogic Appoints CEO
Synlogic, a biotechnology company focused on the development of therapeutic synthetic life, has appointed Jose-Carlos (JC) Gutiérrez-Ramos, Ph.D., as president and CEO. Dr. Gutiérrez-Ramos brings more than 20 years of experience in drug discovery and development leadership spanning the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries as well as academia.
Dr. Gutiérrez-Ramos joins Synlogic from Pfizer where he served as group senior VP and global head of BioTherapeutics Research and Development. In that role, he held responsibility for more than 25 novel programs across the full spectrum of clinical development, re-launched efforts in rare disease discovery and development, and founded the Centers for Therapeutic Innovation. Dr. Gutiérrez-Ramos began his career in academia as part of the Faculty at the Genetics Department of Harvard Medical School. He was also a member of the Basel Institute for Immunology in Basel, Switzerland, and a fellow at the Max-Plank Institute in Freiburg, Germany. He has co authored more than 150 peer-reviewed publications.
Advaxis Appoints VP, Clinical Operations
Advaxis, a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing cancer immunotherapies, has appointed Thomas Hare as VP, clinical operations. Mr. Hare brings to Advaxis more than 28 years of experience in the biopharmaceutical and contract research organization industries overseeing the management of global commercial and clinical operations, data management, outsourcing and medical writing groups.
In this role, Mr. Hare oversees clinical operations for the company’s multiple Lm-LLO cancer immunotherapy clinical programs.
Most recently, Mr. Hare served as VP, drug development operations for Incyte. He holds a master of science, exercising physiology and biomechanics from the University of Delaware.
Makovsky Makes Additions to it Health Practice
Makovsky, a leading independent integrated communications firm, has appointed Tom Jones, senior VP, and Alexandra Peterson, senior VP, to lead the agency’s health practice. Supporting them will be Lee Davies, senior VP, and Arielle Bernstein, group VP, as an extended leadership team led by Jones and Peterson. The new leadership structure was designed to accentuate strengths within the established team, and in preparation for the departure of long-time practice head Gil Bashe.
Before joining Makovsky, Mr. Jones was an executive director at Novartis, heading public relations programs in respiratory, dermatology, neuroscience, diabetes, arthritis and gastrointestinal franchises.
Since joining Makovsky in 2011, he has contributed significantly to the practice’s double-digit growth by spearheading major business development wins and managing the design and execution of award-winning campaigns.
Ms. Peterson joined Makovsky in 2014 with agency experience at MSL Group, Ruder Finn, and Emanate. She has managed business across a variety of therapeutic categories on a global level involving a broad range of integrated campaigns.
Mr. Davies is a biopharmaceutical veteran with more than 40 years of experience in healthcare marketing and communications, who led his own agency for more than 10 years. Most recently, he was director of global media relations and global product communications at Merck and Schering-Plough.
Ms. Bernstein is an accomplished public policy expert, published, and well-regarded in corporate patient advocacy and product access issues. She holds an MPP degree from University of Chicago, and has been a rising leader within the Makovsky Health Practice since joining in 2005.
Dr. Jim Haupt
Intouch Solutions Makes Promotions
Michael Blake has been named to VP of quality services at Intouch Solutions, a marketing agency serving the pharmaceutical industry. He began his career at Intouch 10 years ago working as a software developer. During his tenure, Mr. Blake started the company’s business systems analysis group, which is responsible for creating the solution specifications used by the company’s development and quality control groups to build and test software. He has also played an instrumental role in helping define and roll out many of the company’s internal process improvements.
Intouch Solutions has promoted Jim Haupt, Ph.D., to VP of Intouch Science. Dr. Haupt joined Intouch in 2013 as a medical director and has since built a team of talented content creators and experts who service the company’s medical marketing needs across all three of their offices. He played a key role in creating Intouch Science, a group specializing in clinical guidance. Dr. Haupt received his Ph.D. in biochemistry from Rush Medical School in Chicago.
Giant Greatives/Strategy Names CEO and CFO
Giant Creative/Strategy, a full-service independent healthcare communications agency, has named Steven Gold as CEO and Jeffrey Nemy has joined the company as chief financial officer.
Mr. Gold, who is one of Giant’s co-founders, has served as an agency principal since its start 13 years ago. In the CEO role, Mr. Gold provides leadership and oversight to the company’s financial, human resources, and business operations.
Mr. Nemy is based in the San Francisco office. He helps establish strategic direction for the company, in addition to providing guidance for the internal service departments, including finance and accounting, information technology, and human resources. Before Giant, he had been consulting for a variety of marketing services and e-commerce companies on their strategic initiatives.
Fingerpaint Adds Two to Creative Team
Fingerpaint, a full-service marketing agency, has added a pair of creative talents to its team in the Villanova, Pa., office. Fingerpaint welcomes Tiffany Lillegard as the agency’s newest designer, and Raymond Peraino is the team’s newest copywriter.
An award-winning designer, Ms. Lillegard is an accomplished illustrator and art director, successfully developing and building visual marketing tools across a variety of platforms, including social media, print collateral and overall branding.
Revitas Appoints Chief Technology Officer
Revitas has appointed Hemanth Puttaswamy as chief technology officer and senior VP of products and technology. He joins Revitas at a pivotal time, as the company is executing on key initiatives, including increasing focus on its core pharmaceutical clients, entering new markets, and completing its offering of cloud-based solutions. Mr. Puttaswamy joins Revitas from Saba where he served as chief technology officer and senior VP products and development.
ERT Expands Executive Leadership Team
ERT, a global solution provider for high-quality patient safety and efficacy endpoint data collection, has expanded its executive management team. Andrea Valente has been named executive VP and chief development officer. Ms. Valente leads development, information technology, and strategic sourcing for global ERT. (PV)