News from Takeda, Immune Design, and Pharmacyclics – People on the move

By Natalie Morrison

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Acute lymphoblastic leukemia Medicine Vaccine

in-PharmaTechnologist presents its weekly round-up of the latest changes within the pharmaceutical job sector, including news from Takeda, Immune Design, and Pharmacyclics.

Takeda ​is set to launch a new vaccine business division with Rajeev Venkayya​ as leader.

Venkayya currently serves as director of vaccine delivery at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, focussing specifically on polio eradication and the organisation’s investment in the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI).

“The short supply of affordable vaccines still poses a serious problem in emerging countries,”​ said Tadataka Yamada, Takeda’s chief medical & scientific officer.

“Going forward, pharmaceutical manufacturers will be expected to play a critical role in addressing these issues and under the leadership of Dr. Venkayya, Takeda has taken a step forward in fulfilling its responsibility as a leader in the industry.”

DVS Sciences ​has named Joseph Victor​ as its new president, CEO, and director.

Victor joins the firm – a privately held manufacturer of novel CyTOF multi-parameter single-cell analyzers, as well as MAXPAR reagents for biological research – from Applied Precision, where he was president and CEO.

Of his new appointment, he said: “This is a truly exciting opportunity. The CyTOF mass cytometry platform clearly holds tremendous promise in enabling scientists to better understand the cellular dynamics of disease states, stem cells and other biologically relevant systems.”

Joseph Lobacki ​has become the president and chief commercial officer at Micromet.

Most recently, Lobacki served as senior VP and general manager of transplant and oncology at Genzyme, and as a member of the company's senior management team.

Micromet's president and CEO said that Lobacki’s experience will help with the potential launch of the company's lead product blinatumomab (MT103), which is currently the subject of a European trial in patients with lymphoblastic leukaemia.

Lobacki added: “I look forward to providing the business direction for the planned launch of blinatumomab in acute lymphoblastic leukaemia and helping to maximize the compound's significant commercial potential across multiple indications.”

Immune Design​ has appointed Wayne Gombotz​ as new chief development officer.

Gombotz most recently served as VP of pharmaceutical operations at Omeros Corporation.

Carlos Paya, president and CEO, of Immune Design said: "As we looked to expand our leadership team, we sought someone who we believed would bring a unique viewpoint to our research team and be capable of applying that vision to the multidimensional challenge of vaccine discovery and development. Wayne is exactly that kind of leader."

Pharmacyclics​ has drafted in Lori Anne Kunkel​ as its new chief medical officer.

During her career, Kunkel has worked for large biotechs such as Genentech, Roche, and Novartis, as well as for start-up biotechs like Syndax and Proteolix.

In her new role she will provide strategic input and oversight into the company's clinical development programs and medical affairs.

Bob Duggan, CEO of Pharmacyclics said: "Lori’s years of work in both the academic and medical fields coupled with her extensive business experience and knowledge in the haematology and oncology space will be an invaluable asset to us as we continue to develop PCI-32765 in the clinic and pursue our mission of making a significant difference for the betterment of patients, their care givers and society."

Related topics Bio Developments

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