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People in the News: May 21, 2009


MDRNA has resized its board of directors from eight to five, the company said this week.

As a result, Steven Quay, Alex Cross, and Jack Pollock have stepped down as board members. All three were board members of MDRNA predecessor firm Nastech Pharmaceutical.

The company's current directors include Chairman Bruce Thaw, Daniel Peters, James Rothman, Gregory Sessler, and President and CEO Michael French.

MDRNA also recently announced that it has appointed Beverly Davidson and Carl Novina to its scientific advisory board.

Davidson is a professor at the University of Iowa, where she focuses on inherited genetic diseases that cause central nervous system dysfunction. Novina is an assistant professor at Harvard Medical School and researches the mechanisms and applications of mammalian RNAi.

RNAi drugs startup SanoGene announced this week that it has appointed Daniel Van Hoff and Jeffrey Sherman to its scientific advisory board.

Van Hoff is currently director of translational research at the Translational Genomics Research Institute. He is also CSO of US Oncology.

Sherman is the CMO and senior vice president of research and development at IDM Pharma. Previously, he has held various roles at Takeda Global Research and Development, NeoPharm, Searle/Pharmacia, and Bristol-Myers Squibb.

The Scan

Dropped Charges

The US Justice Department has dropped visa fraud charges against five Chinese researchers, according to the Wall Street Journal.

More Kids

The Associated Press says Moderna is expanding its SARS-CoV-2 vaccine study to included additional children and may include even younger children.

PNAS Papers on Rat Clues to Human Migration, Thyroid Cancer, PolyG-DS

In PNAS this week: ancient rat genome analysis gives hints to human migrations, WDR77 gene mutations in thyroid cancer, and more.

Purnell Choppin Dies

Purnell Choppin, a virologist who led the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, has died at 91, according to the Washington Post.