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Nassim Usman, Barry Polisky, Mark Roellig, and Katherine High

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Sirna Therapeutics said this week that Nassim Usman, senior vice president and COO, is leaving the company to pursue other interests.

Sirna also announced that Barry Polisky, vice president of research, has also been named CSO.

Polisky joined Sirna in 2002 from NeXstar Pharmaceuticals, where he was vice president of research.


Fisher Scientific said this week that Mark Roellig has joined the company as vice president, general counsel, and secretary.

According to Fisher Scientific, Roellig previously served as vice president, general counsel, and secretary of Storage Technology, where he was responsible for all legal and public-policy issues as well as supporting the activities of the board of directors.

Prior to this, Roellig served in legal positions for US West, and practiced civil litigation for Seattle-based law firms Reed, McClure, Moceri, and Thonn; and Perey and Smith.

Roellig holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from the University of Michigan, and a law degree from George Washington University. He also holds an MBA from the University of Washington in Seattle.


Benitec said this week that Katherine High, a hematology researcher at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and advisory committee member of the US Food and Drug Administration, has joined the company’s scientific advisory board.

High is also currently president of the American Society of Gene Therapy and a member of the advisory council of the National Institutes of Health’s National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

She received an MD from the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, and completed her hematology training at the Yale University School of Medicine, said Benitec.

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.