Who's got a powerful grip in biopharma?

In some cases, the most influential people in biopharma appear in these pages every day. They are the CEOs of the largest companies, who control the largest R&D budgets, the fates of thousands of employees and the medicines that impact millions of patients. When one of these company chiefs decides to move like a gangbuster into (or out of) a therapeutic or geographic area, a seismic shift in the industry could be in the offing. That's power.

Health regulators also hold lots of sway over drug approvals, and government bodies have certainly tightened their grips on reimbursements. So we can't forget the obvious influence of bureaucrats. Other times, there are people whose influence in the biopharma world isn't so obvious. Perhaps there's a federal judge in New Jersey or Massachusetts whose rulings have broken big holes in the corporate fortresses of giant drugmakers. Or a well-connected lobbyist on Capitol Hill who knows just what lawmaking levers to pull to determine a legislative outcome to benefit drugmakers. On the other hand, public health advocates can wield some clout, too.

Enough commentary. We want our readers to weigh in on whom should be selected for our list of the 25 most powerful people in biopharma. We expect that we'll receive nominations for the industry's usual suspects ("Calling Monsieur Viehbacher"), but we're also hoping to be surprised by some of the names you send to us. As we've done with previous features, we plan to factor reader submissions for this feature heavily into our decisions on the final list. Please check in with us after the new year to read the special report.

Please take a minute to fill out our online nomination form. - Ryan McBride (twitter | email)