David Altshuler

Dec 15, 2014

David Altshuler is leaving the Broad Institute of Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to join Vertex Pharmaceuticals as executive VP, global research and chief scientific officer. Altshuler was one of the four founding members of the Broad and has served as deputy director and chief academic officer since 2009. He also is currently a professor of genetics and medicine at Harvard Medical School and an adjunct professor of biology at MIT.

Altshuler has resigned from his position as a Vertex director and will begin his new role at the firm in early 2015.

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Dec 18, 2018

Jessica Hassel, Aurélien Marabelle

Protagen has appointed Jessica Hassel and Aurélien Marabelle to the firm's scientific advisory board. The members will support the company in developing and implementing its immuno-profiling technology. Hassel is currently the head of dermato-oncology at Germany's National Center for Tumor Disease. She has worked at the German Cancer Research Center Heidelberg, with a focus on translational oncology. Marabelle is currently the clinical director of the Cancer Immunotherapy Program at Gustave Roussy Cancer Center in Villejuif, France. He works as a senior medical oncologist and an investigator in the center's drug development department. 

Dec 17, 2018

Amy Abernethy

Amy Abernethy, current chief medical officer, CSO, and senior VP of oncology at Flatiron Health will join the US Food and Drug Administration as principal deputy commissioner, second to the agency's commissioner Scott Gottlieb. She is slated to join the agency in early 2019, pending ethics clearances, and will replace Rachel Sherman, who is retiring as the FDA's current principal deputy commissioner. Patrizia Cavazzoni, who is deputy director for operations at the FDA's drug center, will step in as interim principal deputy commissioner till Abernethy joins.

Abernethy became an executive at the cancer focused health technology firm Flatiron more than four years ago. She currently serves as a member of the board for CareDx, and will step down from that post effective Jan. 31, 2019. She has served as a director on the company's board since July 2018 as chairman of the scientific committee. Abernethy has also worked at Athenahealth and directed the Duke Center for Learning Health Care. In an internal email about Abernethy's hire, the FDA highlighted that she is an internationally recognized expert in clinical trials, cancer outcomes research, health policy, patient-reported outcomes, and patient-centered care, and has authored more than 400 peer-reviewed articles.

The non-profit advocacy organization Personalized Medicine Coalition, where Abernethy serves as a board member, noted in a statement that the agency's decision to hire her reflects its increasing focus on personalized medicine. While Abernethy was at Flatiron, the company struck up a research alliance with the FDA to explore how real-world data, derived from sources outside of the traditional clinical trial setting, could be used to gather evidence on the safety and efficacy of cancer treatments.

Dec 17, 2018

Richard Marsh, Benjamin Jackson

Richard Marsh, executive VP of Myriad Genetics, as well as its general counsel and secretary, will retire from the company effective July 1, 2019.  After serving as Myriad's general counsel for more than 16 years, Marsh has acceped the job of mission president for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for the next three years.

Benjamin Jackson, currently Myriad's VP, assistant general counsel, and assistant secretary, will succeed Marsh. Jackson has been with the company since 2006 and has held positions dealing with commercial operations and intellectual property issues.

Dec 12, 2018

Melissa Lueke, Eric Rasmussen, Bryan Baldasare

Executive VP and CFO at Meridian Bioscience, Melissa Lueke, will retire from her position effective January 1, 2019. Lueke, who has been at Meridian for 20 years, will remain with the firm in a paid financial consulting role with a renewable contract of three years.

Meridian also promoted Eric Rasmussen from his role as EVP of Corporate Development to the position of EVP, CFO, and Principal Financial Officer, also effective January 1, 2019. Rasmussen was hired by Meridian in June of 2018, and previously served in corporate development and financial leadership roles at Lear Corporation, an automotive seating and electrical systems supplier. Rasmussen has also served on the advisory board of Exploragen, a DNA lifestyle company.

Meridian has also promoted Bryan Baldasare to the role of Chief Accounting Office. Baldasare has been with Meridian since 2000, and most recently served as Senior VP, Corporate Controller and Treasurer.

Dec 11, 2018

Catherine Friedman, Alex Aravanis

Grail has appointed Catherine Friedman as chair of the firm's board of directors. Friedman succeeds Bill Rastetter, who will continue to serve as a director of the firm's board. Friedman joined the board in July 2017. She has also held numerous executive positions during her investment banking career with Morgan Stanley, including as managing director and head of West Coast healthcare, and co-head of the biotechnology practice. Friedman is also a board member at Altaba, Radius Health, and Lyell Immunopharma.

Grail has also appointed Alex Aravanis as CSO and head of R&D. Aravanis is a cofounder of Grail. Prior to being CSO, Aravanis served as VP of research and development. He previously served as senior director of R&D for Illumina. In addition, Aravanis served as VP of development and CSO of Sapphire Energy and was a cofounder and VP of engineering of Pria Diagnostics.

Dec 11, 2018

Hans Clevers

The board of directors of Roche Holding has proposed Hans Clevers as a new board member. He is scheduled to be elected to the board at the company's annual general meeting on March 5, 2019. Clevers is a professor of molecular genetics at the University Medical Center Utrecht in the Netherlands.

Dec 10, 2018

Cynthia Collins

Cynthia Collins has joined the board of directors of Editas Medicine. Most recently, she was the CEO of Human Longevity. Prior to that, she was CEO/GM of General Electric's Healthcare Cell Therapy Business, Lab Businesses, and Clarient Diagnostics. Before that, she was president and CEO of GenVec, and prior to that, group vice president of the Cellular Analysis Business of Beckman Coulter. Collins holds a BS degree in microbiology from the University of Illinois, Urbana, and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Dec 10, 2018

Daniel O'Day, William Anderson

Daniel O'Day will leave his post as CEO and corporate executive committee member of Roche Pharmaceuticals at the end of December to become CEO and board chairman of Gilead Sciences, effective March 1, 2019.

In the interim period, he will provide support to Roche to ensure a smooth transition to his successor, William Anderson, who will become CEO of Roche Pharmaceuticals effective Jan. 1, 2019. Anderson currently serves as CEO of Roche-owned Genentech, which he joined in 2006. In previous roles, he led Genentech's immunology business unit, headed oncology sales and marketing, and led global product strategy.

Dec 10, 2018

Prahlad Singh

Prahlad Singh has been appointed president and chief operating officer of PerkinElmer, effective Jan. 1, 2019. Singh will be responsible for the Discovery and analytical solutions and the diagnostics operating divisions. He joined PerkinElmer in 2014 as president of the diagnostics business, was elected as an officer in 2016 and executive vice president in 2016. Prior to joining the firm, Singh served as general manager of GE Healthcare's women's health business. He has also held senior executive level positions in strategy, business development, and M&A at GE and at Philips Healthcare.


Dec 10, 2018

Bradley Cole

Castle Biosciences announced Bradley Cole has been appointed to its board. Cole is the CFO of Genomic Health and has more than 30 years of experience in finance and operations in the diagnostics and life sciences industries. He also has served as COO of Genomic Health. Prior to joining the firm, he was VP of finance and business development for the endovascular solutions group at Guiidant, and was VP and GM of vascular surgery business unit of Guidant. 

Dec 07, 2018

E. Robert Wassman

NeuroPointDx, a division of Stemina Biomarker Discovery, has appointed E. Robert Wassman as its medical director. Wassman has acted as chief medical officer (CMO) for several companies in the genetic testing, biomarker discovery, and diagnostic development space. He previously served as CMO of Lineagen from 2015 to 2017. Before that, he served as CMO at Rosetta Genomics from 2012 to 2015. Wassman has also previously served as CMO at other companies in the personalized medicine space over the past 35 years, including Genzyme Genetics, Celula, Ambry Genetics, and Alfigen. 

Dec 07, 2018

Caroline Loew, Stanley Lapidus, Robert Langer

Glympse Bio has appointed Caroline Loew as the firm's president and CEO. Loew previously served as VP, heading of R&D strategy and planning at Bristol-Myers Squibb. In addition, she has served in senior roles at Merck and phRMA over the past 20 years, where she led teams in drug development, regulatory policy, market access, and commercial. 

Glympse has also appointed Stanley Lapidus as the firm's chairman and Robert Langer to the firm's board of directors. Lapidus has been the founding CEO of four medical technology companies, including Cytyc, Exact Sciences, Helicos, and SynapDx.

Dec 06, 2018

Hilde Furberg, Guido Oelkers

Blueprint Genetics has appointed Hilde Furberg as chairman of its board of directors. Furberg previously served as head of rare disease Europe at Sanofi Genzyme. She is also currently an industrial advisor to Investinor and a board member of BerGenBio, Calliditas, and Tappin. Hilde has previously worked at companies including Baxter and Genzyme, and has also been a board member of Probi, Pronova, Clavis, and Algeta.

In addition, Blueprint has appointed Guido Oelkers as a senior advisor to the firm. Oelkers currently serves as CEO of Swedish Orphan Biovitirum. Previously, he served in roles including CEO of BSN Medical, CEO of Gambro, CEO of Invida, and a number of executive commercial operations roles in companies such as Nycomed, DKSH Group, and Aventis. 

Dec 06, 2018

Bradley Cole

Castle Biosciences has appointed Bradley Cole to its board of directors. Cole currently serves as Genomic Health's CFO. In addition, Cole served as both chief operating officer and CFO at the firm. Previously, Cole served as VP of finance and business development for the Endovascular Solutions Group at Guidant. Prior to that, he served as VP and general manager of the vascular surgery business unit of Guidant. Previously, he served as CFO at Endovascular Technologies until it was acquired by Guidant in 1997. Before Endovascular, he served as CFO at Applied Biosystems until 1994. 

Nov 30, 2018

Stevan Knezevich

DermTech has appointed Stevan Knezevich to its scientific advisory board. Knezevich has a PhD in pathology and laboratory medicine from the University of Vancouver, B.C., and a MD from the University of Toronto. 

 Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), who chairs the Senate health committee, will be retiring at the end of his term, Stat News reports.

UCSF researchers find that having two X chromosomes may contribute to women's longer lifespans, according to Discover's D-brief blog.

The Wall Street Journal reports on the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's use of genetic approaches to study foodborne illnesses.

In PNAS this week: immune cell profiling of wild baboons by social status, metabolomics profiling of esophageal tumors, and more.