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PEOPLE: GenomeWeb s Weekly Personnel Roundup of the Genomics Sector: Feb 13, 2002

NEW YORK, Feb. 13 - Compugen said on Wednesday that Vincent Zurawski, CEO of its US subsidiary and president of the company's Novel Genomics Division, will be leaving the firm in mid-March.

 

Erez Chimovits, the company's executive vice president of marketing and sales, will take over Zurawski's corporate responsibilities. Vice President of Experimental Biology Kinneret Savitsky will take on Zurawski's research and development responsibilities.

 

Zurawski plans to continue providing consulting services to Compugen, especially in diagnostic product development.

 



CuraGen subsidiary 454 Corporation has appointed Richard Begley as president and CEO, the company said on Tuesday.

 

Begley will direct the company's efforts to develop new technologies in genomic and proteomic analysis. 454 Corporation is currently working to invent a new technique for massive parallel analysis of genomic sequences.

 

He was previously a general manager at Agilent, where he oversaw several divisions of the company's chemical analysis group. He was also vice president and general manager of global enterprise solutions at the company.

 

Before that, Begley was in senior management at Hewlett Packard.

 


 

Caliper Technologies has hired Susan Evans as vice president of product development, the company said in a statement on Feb. 11. Evans will be in charge of all company product development, including new products and line extensions.

 

Evans was previously vice president of R&D at LifeScan, a Johnson & Johnson company. Before that, she was senior vice president of R&D at clinical diagnostics company Dade Behring, where she also was involved in directing product development, technology portfolio planning, and technology assessment.

 

Evans, a biochemist, is also on the board of directors of the American Association for Clinical Chemistry.

 

Caliper Technologies, based in Mountain View, Calif., designs, manufactures, and commercializes microfluidic and lab-on-a-chip technology.

 


 

Genomic chemistry company Epoch Biosciences said on Feb. 11 that it had appointed Michael Lucero to its board of directors. Lucero, a senior vice president of marketing at microfluidic company Fluidigm, will provide advice in product development, product management, and marketing.


Epoch is preparing to launch new microarray and PCR products, and Lucero will assist in this effort.

 

Before his work at Fluidigm, Lucero was vice president of applications marketing and R&D at Applied Biosystems, where he managed research and marketing for company PCR systems, sequence detection systems, and other products.

 

Epoch is based in Bothell, Wash.

 


 

Genelabs senior medical director Kenneth Schwartz has been promoted to vice president of medical affairs, and Marc Gurwith, the company's vice president of drug development and chief medical officer, has left the firm. Both personnel changes were announced in a statement on Feb. 11.

 

Schwartz will take on Gurwith's responsibilities, and the company is not seeking a replacement chief medical officer.

 

Schwartz has been involved in the company's Phase III clinical trials and acts as a liaison with the US Food and Drug Administration. He has been with the company since 1995.

 

Genelabs' lupus drug, Aslera, was turned down by the FDA last June. The company is now working to address FDA concerns and get the drug approved.

 

Genelabs, a publicly owned company, is based in Redwood City, Calif. It focuses on anti-microbial drug discovery, especially new treatments that target pathogenic DNA.

 

Gurwith is now senior vice president for medical affairs and chief medical officer at VaxGen, which is developing anti-HIV vaccines.

 


 

Inctye Genomics said on Feb. 7 that it had hired Brian Metcalf as executive vice president and chief drug discovery scientist.

 

Metcalf brings a background in medicinal chemistry and drug discovery to Incyte, which is just what the doctor ordered for the erstwhile genomics tool company. "Brian has both a very successful pharmaceutical track record and the innovative mindset we are seeking to build on at Incyte," Robert Stein, Incyte's president and chief scientific officer, said in a statement. Metcalf, who will also head Incyte's new East Coast operations, will be reporting to Stein.

 

In November 2001, Incyte replaced its president and chief scientific officer with recruits from DuPont's pharmaceutical division in an effort to move from databases to drugs.

 

Metcalf was previously vice president and chief scientific officer at Kosan Biosciences and remains on that company's scientific advisory board.

 

Before that, Metcalf was senior vice president for discovery chemistry and platform technologies for SmithKline Beecham.

 


 

Whitehead Institute communications chief Seema Kumar has taken a new role as associate director of the genomics research institute.

 

As associate director, Kumar will be a member of the center's senior management team and be involved in strategic initiatives and planning. She will also retain a role in communications as chief communications officer.

 


 

Molecular biologist Max Perutz, who won the Nobel Prize in 1962 for defining the structure of hemoglobin, died of cancer on Feb. 6 at the age of 87.

 

In the 1950s, Perutz and colleague John Kendrew developed a new technique in X-ray crystallography that made it possible for the first time to determine the structures of proteins.

 

Perutz also founded the Cambridge Laboratory of Molecular Biology, which has trained nine Nobel laureates since the 1950s. He ran the lab until 1979.

 

Perutz is survived by his wife, Gisela, and children Robin and Vivien.

 



Promoted? Changing jobs? GenomeWeb wants to know. Help us keep track of you by e-mailing us at [email protected] PEOPLE, a roundup of personnel comings and goings in genomics, appears each Wednesday.

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