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Andrew von Eschenbach, Lester Crawford, Douglas Throckmorton, Walter Narajowski, Gustavo Salem

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Andrew von Eschenbach has been named acting commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration following the resignation of former commissioner Lester Crawford last week.

Von Eschenbach has been director of the National Cancer Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health, since January 2002. Before that, he worked as a doctor and executive at the M D Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. Von Eschenbach has said that he intends to act as both head of the FDA and director of NCI.

The appointment ends the tenure of Crawford who resigned last Friday.

Crawford, a veterinarian and expert on food safety, was named deputy commissioner of the agency in early 2002 before his tenure as acting commissioner began last year.

In a message to colleagues, Crawford cited his age — 67 — as a factor in his decision to step aside.


Douglas Throckmorton has been named deputy director of the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research by the FDA. Throckmorton joined the FDA in 1997 and has been acting deputy director of CDER since May 2004.

Before joining the FDA, Throckmorton practiced medicine and held academic appointments at the Medical College of Georgia and the VA Medical Center in Augusta, Ga.


Walter Narajowski has been named president and CEO of Pathways Diagnostics, the assay development company said this week. He will also join the firm's board of directors.

Narajowski was formerly the vice president and general manager of Focus Diagnostics' infectious disease reference lab. Prior to Focus, Mr. Narajowski spent over 20 years at Abbott Laboratories, where he was most recently vice president and general manager of critical care products and vice president and general manager of the infusion pump business.

Narajowski holds an MS in bioengineering from the University of Utah and a BSc in electrical engineering from Illinois Institute of Technology.


Assay Designs has appointed Gustavo Salem as its new president and CEO, the Ann Arbor, Mich.-based biotech firm said last week.

Prior to joining Assay Designs, Salem held a variety of positions at Bio-Rad Laboratories, including division manager of protein separations and business unit manager for biomaterials. Prior to this, he held a series of sales and marketing positions at PerSeptive Biosystems, Beckman Instruments, and Amersham.

The Scan

Tens of Millions Saved

The Associated Press writes that vaccines against COVID-19 saved an estimated 20 million lives in their first year.

Supersized Bacterium

NPR reports that researchers have found and characterized a bacterium that is visible to the naked eye.

Also Subvariants

Moderna says its bivalent SARS-CoV-2 vaccine leads to a strong immune response against Omicron subvariants, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Science Papers Present Gene-Edited Mouse Models of Liver Cancer, Hürthle Cell Carcinoma Analysis

In Science this week: a collection of mouse models of primary liver cancer, and more.