Welcome to this week's Chutes and Ladders, our roundup of hirings, firings and retirings throughout the industry. Please send the good word—or the bad—from your shop to Eric Sagonowsky (email) or Angus Liu (email) and we will feature it here at the end of each week.
Former Novo Nordisk U.S. exec lands at Tymlos-emboldened Radius
Jesper Høiland becomes new CEO.
Things are looking good for Radius and its just-launched osteoporosis drug Tymlos for now, as the FDA just rejected Amgen and UCB’s competing med Evenity (romosozumab) after a phase 3 study elicited safety concerns. Just in time to capitalize on the win is a new CEO for Raidus. Jesper Høiland, former president of Novo Nordisk U.S., replaced Bob Ward, the company’s CEO since 2013, who guided the company through its IPO and the Tymlos approval. Høiland, a Novo vet since 1987, left the Danish company amid a major worldwide shakeup last September pressured by U.S. payers and competition in diabetes. Raidus’ chairman Kurt Graves said the company believes Høiland is “uniquely qualified to lead Radius through the successful launch of Tymlos,” since he has demonstrated success in launching major brands. But there are challenges lying ahead. FiercePharma
Ex-Sanofi Genzyme CEO Meeker joins Trevi as chairman
David Meeker will become chairman.
In April, David Meeker abruptly announced his plan of stepping down from the top job at Sanofi Genzyme at the end of June, after being with Genzyme/Sanofi for more than two decades. Now that Bill Sibold has taken over at Genzyme, Meeker has found himself a chairman position on Trevi’s board. The news came as the Connecticut company, which focuses on developing opioid drug Nalbuphine ER for chronic itch associated with dermatologic, metabolic, heatologic and neuropathic conditions, just completed a series C financing of $50.5 million led by New Enterprise Associates. Release
Swiss biotech Myovant expands exec team with four key hires
Four senior-level exec hires were announced.
Women’s health-focused Myovant Sciences announced four key hires. Matthew Lang, formerly a VP at Gilead’s legal team, joined as general counsel and corporate secretary. Juan Camilo Arjona Ferreira, M.D., was named CMO; he was most recently SVP of clinical development at Shionogi, responsible for leading the company’s U.S. clinical development organization; and prior to that, he spent over a decade at Merck & Co., serving as executive director of clinical research in women’s health. Teresa Perney, Ph.D., was the medicine team leader for Xtandi and talazoparib at Pfizer, and had also held positions of increasing responsibility within regulatory affairs at Medivation and Roche/Genentech; she is now Myovant’s SVP of regulatory affairs and quality assurance. Andria Langenberg, M.D., was appointed head of drug safety and pharmacovigilance, a similar position as the one she previously held at Medivation. Release
SynteractHCR welcomes PRA vet as new CEO
Steve Powell was named CEO.
Steve Powell is replacing Wendel Barr as SynteractHCR’s new CEO. Powell brings with him more than 25 years of leadership experience in the biopharma industry, having held senior-level leadership roles at PRA Health Sciences and Exco InTouch. During his time at Exco InTouch and ERT following an acquisition last December, Powell was focused on development of new technologies in patient engagement, data capture and digital health. He plans to bring his knowledge in digital clinical research to his new job at SynteractHCR. FierceCRO
> Andrew Long, formerly SVP of global finance at Patheon, will succeed Darryl Baker as Insys Therapeutics’ CFO. Release
> Cancer medtech company Lumicell announced the appointment of Kelly Londy, previously with GE Healthcare and Philips Healthcare, as its CEO, as it closed a series C of $13.5 million. Release
> BenevolentAI named Nathan Brown, Ph.D., its head of cheminformatics, a position left by Mark Davies after his promotion to VP of biomedical informatics earlier. Release
> Context Therapeutics, with a focus on Sigma1-related diseases, appointed Erard Gilles, M.D., as CMO. Release
> Raffi Asadorian will join AcelRx Pharmaceuticals, which develops treatments for moderate-to-severe acute pain, as CFO. Release
> Constellation Pharmaceuticals brought on Adrian Senderowicz, M.D., formerly a clinical team leader at the FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research Division of Drug Oncology Products, as SVP and CMO. Release
> London-based Autolus, which develops novel T-cell therapies named several appointments: Christopher Vann as COO, Matthias Alder as CBO and general counsel, Muhammad Al-Hajj as SVP of translational sciences, and Nushmia Khokhar as VP of clinical development. Release
> AxoGen, a specialist in surgical solutions for peripheral nerve injuries, tapped Jon S. Gingrich as CCO. Release