Medtronic appoints Pfizer EVP as independent board director

Lidia Fonseca is EVP and chief digital and technology officer at Pfizer [Image courtesy of Fonseca]

Medtronic (NYSE:MDT) announced today that it appointed Lidia Fonseca to its board of directors as an independent director.

Fonseca, who serves as EVP and chief digital and technology officer at Pfizer, will become a director effective today. She will serve on the board’s Compensation Committee and Science and Technology Committee.

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Dentsply CFO Jorge Gomez leaves to assume same role at Moderna

Moderna (Nasdaq:MRNA) announced today that it appointed Jorge Gomez as its new chief financial officer.

Gomez resigned as CFO of Dentsply Sirona (Nasdaq:XRAY), effective May 6, to assume the same role at Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Moderna. He will join effective May 9.

Dentsply Sirona said in a news release that it is initiating a search process to identify its next CFO.

“We thank Jorge for his many contributions since joining Dentsply Sirona in 2019, including strengthening the Finance and IT organizations and enhancing our ESG initiative,” Dentsply Sirona CEO Don Casey said in the release.

Gomez, who served as EVP and CFO at Dentsply since August 2019, spent 13 years at Cardinal Health with his most recent role there also being CFO.

“I am pleased to welcome Jorge to Moderna as our Chief Financial Officer and as a member of the Executive Committee,” Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel said in a release. “As we grow and scale …

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Biden says he’ll nominate Robert Califf as FDA commissioner

Former FDA commissioner Dr. Robert Califf [Image is public domain]

Former FDA commissioner Dr. Robert Califf could return to his old job if President Joe Biden has his way.

Biden today announced his intention to nominate Califf to serve as FDA commissioner — a job he previously held during the Obama administration from 2016-17.

A cardiology professor at Duke University and a member of the Duke Clinical Research Institute, Califf is also head of clinical policy at Google’s Alphabet sister company Verily Life Sciences.

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Report: Two vaccine leaders set to step down from FDA

Two senior vaccine leaders within the FDA are reportedly relinquishing their positions within the administration.

According to a report from Endpoints News, which cites a letter released internally to FDA staff first reported on by BioCentury, Marion Gruber and Phil Krause will depart in the coming months due to frustrations over the delegation of certain decisions within some governing bodies. All this comes amid a critical juncture in the effort to vaccinate the U.S. against COVID-19, with the FDA recently fully authorizing Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccine and reviewing booster shots, which could be available in September.

Gruber, a 32-year veteran at the FDA and currently the director of the FDA’s Office of Vaccines Research & Review, will leave at the end of October, the report said. Krause, the deputy director of the Office of Vaccines Research & Review, will leave in November.

Endpoints cited a former FDA leader as saying Gruber an…

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Thermo Fisher Scientific expands corporate leadership team

Thermo Fisher Scientific (NYSE:TMO) announced today that it appointed Alan Sachs to chief medical officer and Karen E. Nelson to chief scientific officer.

Sachs served as Waltham, Mass.-based Thermo Fisher’s CSO since 2016 and will be succeeded by Nelson as he assumes the newly established CMO position at the company. Both will join the company’s leadership team in August.

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Former head of Operation Warp Speed leaves two more drug companies

Following allegations of sexual harassment, former head of Operation Warp Speed Moncef Slaoui has left roles at two more companies.

Yesterday, Slaoui was terminated as the chair of the Galvani board of directors, GlaxoSmithKline’s board of directors announced. The same day, Vaxcyte confirmed in an SEC filing that it had axed Slaoui as its chairman of the board. Today, Centessa Pharmaceuticals announced that he stepped down as the company’s chief scientific officer.

Slaoui, who served as the head of Operation Warp Speed — the Trump administration’s program to accelerate COVID-19 vaccine development — had his termination made effective immediately by all three companies.

Termination of Slaoui follows the receipt of a letter by GlaxoSmithKline alleging against him sexual harassment and inappropriate conduct towards a GSK employee. The allegations refer to incidents that occurred several years ago when he was a GSK employee.

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Dyve Biosciences appoints Camilla V. Simpson to its board

Clinical-stage biotechnology company Dyve Biosciences announced this week that Camilla V. Simpson joined its board of directors.

Simpson possesses over 25 years of experience in the biotech industry, currently serving as an independent member of the board of directors at Spruce Biosciences and as a member of the scientific advisory board at Aristea Therapeutics, according to a news release.

She also holds the role of president of Rare Strategic and acts as a strategic advisor to early-stage biotech companies working in a number of indications across various modalities.

Simpson has also held previous roles including senior VP & head of product portfolio development at BioMarin Pharmaceutical and, before that, she was the VP of global regulatory strategy for early development and business development at Shire Pharmaceuticals.

“I am very pleased to join Dyve’s board of directors to support its efforts to develop new therapeutics utilizing innovat…

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B. Braun’s top North American executive to retire

Caroll H. Neubauer will retire at the end of August as the head of B. Braun’s North America operations.

B. Braun announced today that Caroll H. Neubauer will retire at the end of August after 24 years leading the Melsungen, Germany–based medical and drug delivery device giant’s North America operations.

Jean-Claude Dubacher, a former Johnson & Johnson and Abbott executive who already took over Neubauer’s role as CEO of B. Braun Medical at the start of the year, has now also assumed Neubauer’s position as chair and CEO of B. Braun of America, effective June 1. Neubauer will stay on until Aug. 31 as executive director of B. Braun of America.

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