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Russ Smestad, Martin Bedigian

Mirus Bio President Russ Smestad plans to leave the company after completion of Roche’s planned acquisition of Mirus (see related story, this issue).
According to Smestad, he will remain with Mirus through the transition period following the acquisition, but will then leave to pursue other opportunities in the biotechnology field.

Isis Pharmaceuticals said last week that it has appointed Martin Bedigian as vice president and chief medical officer.
In this role, Bedigian will be responsible for all medical aspects of Isis' clinical development programs, the company said.
Bedigian previously served as global head of Novartis’ cardiovascular assessment group. He holds an MD from New York Medical College and completed his residency at Emory University.

The Scan

Study Finds Sorghum Genetic Loci Influencing Composition, Function of Human Gut Microbes

Focusing on microbes found in the human gut microbiome, researchers in Nature Communications identified 10 sorghum loci that appear to influence the microbial taxa or microbial metabolite features.

Treatment Costs May Not Coincide With R&D Investment, Study Suggests

Researchers in JAMA Network Open did not find an association between ultimate treatment costs and investments in a drug when they analyzed available data on 60 approved drugs.

Sleep-Related Variants Show Low Penetrance in Large Population Analysis

A limited number of variants had documented sleep effects in an investigation in PLOS Genetics of 10 genes with reported sleep ties in nearly 192,000 participants in four population studies.

Researchers Develop Polygenic Risk Scores for Dozens of Disease-Related Exposures

With genetic data from two large population cohorts and summary statistics from prior genome-wide association studies, researchers came up with 27 exposure polygenic risk scores in the American Journal of Human Genetics.