Fred Hutchinson brings on ex-Merck cancer R&D chief Gilliland as president

Chutes and Ladders

Welcome to this week's Chutes and Ladders, our roundup of hirings and retirings throughout the industry. Please send the good word--or the bad--from your shop to Michael Gibney (email | Twitter) or Amirah Al Idrus (email | Twitter), and we will feature it here at the end of each week.

Fred Hutchinson brings on ex-Merck cancer R&D chief Gilliland as president

The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center has tapped well-known drug investigator Gary Gilliland to become its new president. Beginning on the first work day in January, Gilliland, who recently completed a stretch at Merck ($MRK) as head of oncology drug research, will take the helm of one of the country's top cancer research institutes. Among other things, the Hutch has played a leading role in launching the CAR-T and TCR player Juno, which is now going public. Gilliland's lengthy resume includes a professorship at Harvard University and a stint at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. And he says the timing is right to focus on new ways to cure cancer. "This is the perfect time and perfect place to develop curative approaches for cancer," said Gilliland, a physician-scientist. "Everything I've done in my career has pointed here." Release

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Gary Gilliland became the new president.


James Burns will head the Sanofi ($SNY) Genzyme R&D center effective December 1. Release

Scholar Rock appointed Gregory Carven as vice president of antibody discovery and protein sciences. Release

> Batu Biologics has recruited Deyu Fang to its Scientific Advisory Board. Release

Biothera named Jeremy Graff as SVP of pharmaceutical research. Release

Synchrogenix has appointed Kelley Kendle​ as its new CEO. Release

Jade Therapeutics has named ophthalmology pioneer Dr. Randall Olson to its board of directors. Release

Retrophin ($RTRX) names Margaret Valeur-Jensen as general counsel. Release

Dr. James M. Wilson has joined ReGenX Biosciences as its new chief scientific adviser. Release

BioTelemetry announced that Dr. Eric Prystowsky will transition from the board of directors to a medical advisory role. Release

Shire ($SHPG) has appointed Jeff Poulton as interim CFO, to begin Jan. 1, 2015. Release

Nopras Technologies appointed Stewart Rosenberg to be the company's director of business development for East Coast operations. Release

Anterios brought on Fabian Tenenbaum as its chief financial officer and chief business officer. Release

Eric Shaff joined 2014 Fierce 15 company Seres Health as chief financial officer. Release

Intercept ($ICPT) appointed Lisa Bright as its head of Europe. Release

PTC Therapeutics ($PTCT) named Dr. Tuyen Ong its new head of clinical development and translational research. Release

Xrpro brought on Richard Cunningham as president and CEO. Release

Ablynx appointed Johan Heylen as its chief commercial officer. Release

Vectura named Andrew Oakley as its group CFO. Release

Novira Therapeutics has appointed Dr. Brian Daniels as a member of its scientific advisory board. Release

Catabasis named Angelika Fretzen as its vice president of development. Release


> Navitor Pharmaceuticals, a 2014 Fierce 15 company, has appointed Eddine Saiah as vice president of drug discovery. Release

Moberg Pharma AB appoints Jeff Vernimb as general manager of U.S. business. Release

Breckenridge Pharmaceutical announces the appointment of Larry Lapila as president. Release

Intellipharmaceutics ($IPCI) appoints Domenic Della Penna as new CFO. Release

LEO Pharma appointed Barbara Osborne as president and CEO of its U.S. Region. Release

> Piedmont Pharmaceuticals hired Stan Cruitt to be vice president of marketing services. Release

> Agile Therapeutics ($AGRX) appoints John Hubbard to its board of directors. Release

Purdue Pharma appointed Dr. Gail Cawkwell to be its vice president of medical affairs. Release

Laura Clague joined Retrophin as the company's chief financial officer. Release

Trinity Pharma appointed Dennis Morgan as its chief financial officer and appointed Steven Hirschfeld to its board of directors. Release

Antares Pharma named James Fickenscher as its senior vice president and chief financial officer. Release

Med tech

> Mela Sciences ($MELA) names Michael Stewart its next president and CEO. Release


> Vermillion ($VRML) appointed charter members to a new Strategic & Medical Advisory Board: Dr. Daniel Chan of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine; Dr. Robert Bristow from the University of California, Irvine; and Calaneet Balas, CEO of the Ovarian Cancer National Alliance. Release