CAMBRIDGE, Mass. and FOSTER CITY, Calif., Oct. 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Clarus Ventures, LLC ("Clarus Ventures"), a leading life sciences investment firm, announced today the appointments of Barry Gertz, M.D., Ph.D., to Venture Partner, and Ari Brettman, M.D., as Associate, both based in the firm's Cambridge, MA, office. Dr. Gertz will also become Chief Medical Advisor for Relay Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a newly formed Clarus-backed development company focused on risk-sharing partnerships with pharmaceutical companies. Dr. Gertz joins Clarus from Merck, where he was Senior Vice President of Global Clinical Development, overseeing all aspects of Merck's clinical research. He brings 28 years of experience in drug development, from exploratory clinical pharmacology to global Phase 3 trials. In that capacity he was instrumental in the development and approval of more than 25 new drugs and vaccines, including the blockbuster products Fosamax and Januvia. Dr. Gertz holds M.D., Ph.D., and B.A. degrees from the University of Pennsylvania.