Welcome to this week’s Chutes & Ladders, our roundup of hirings, firings and retirings throughout the industry. Please send the good word—or the bad—from your shop to Kyle Blankenship, and we will feature it here at the end of each week.
Teva taps new CFO, hikes legal set-aside to more than $1B as opioid deal falters
Eli Kalif will take over as chief financial officer.
Kalif, formerly the senior VP of finance at Flex, will take over for outgoing CFO Michael McClellan, who led Teva’s $3 billion cost-cutting drive intended to overcome a series of disastrous guidance cuts at the Israeli drugmaker. The replacement comes as Teva is headlong into its predicted “trough year” as Copaxone copies nip at its drug sales and generic pricing headwinds have continued to drive down revenue. FiercePharma
Endo CEO’s departure another C-suite hit at generic industry’s biggest players
CEO Paul Campanelli is on the way out at Endo.
Campanelli is only the most recent in a series of generic execs who’ve left or lost their jobs in the face of massive opioid liabilities, pricing headwinds stateside and pressure for industry players to opt for major buyouts a la Mylan’s deal with Pfizer’s Upjohn. Campanelli, who will stay on chairman, re-upped his contract with Endo in April, making his departure a bigger surprise and a bigger challenge “given how instrumental he has been in steering the company through the last several years, which have included the mesh settlements, the 2016 generic downturn and ongoing opioid litigation,” RBC Capital Markets analyst Randall Stanicky said in a Monday note to investors. FiercePharma
MD Anderson’s Hahn picked as next FDA commissioner
Stephen Hahn has officially been nominated as FDA commissioner.
He will take over for Ned Sharpless, who had been running the U.S. regulator on an interim basis since Scott Gottlieb, another President Donald Trump pick, left in the spring. Sharpless had been a front-runner, but Hahn in the past few weeks had overtaken him. In fact, Sharpless is making the unusual move of going straight back to his former role at the National Cancer Institute. Admiral Brett Giroir, an official at the Department of Health and Human Services, will be steering the ship in the interim. FierceBiotech
> After three full business days in the position, an abrupt about-face has LabCorp Diagnostics’ CEO John Ratliff heading for the exit. Formerly CEO of Covance, Ratliff was named the next CEO of LabCorp Diagnostics in early October, with the switch planned for Nov. 1—the same day set for longtime Merck leader Adam Schechter to become LabCorp’s overarching president and CEO. Paul Kirchgraber, the former head of Covance’s clinical trial testing solutions, was promoted to Covance’s CEO position in Ratliff’s stead. FierceBiotech
> Amid the merger of Celgene and his former company Bristol-Myers Squibb, there was no room at the inn for oncologist Thomas Lynch, M.D., as its chief scientific officer. As the company becomes Squelgene, Lynch was edged out in the summer and went on to “pursue other healthcare opportunities.” Now, he’s landed at cancer biotech Kleo Pharmaceuticals as its chairman. He joins another BMS alumnus in CEO Doug Manion, M.D., who had been its senior vice president and head of specialty development before becoming the chief at Kleo back in the summer of 2017. FierceBiotech
> Howard Mayer, M.D., Shire’s ex-senior vice president, chief medical officer and head of R&D at its neuroscience unit, will move over to French biotech Ipsen as its new EVP and head of R&D from Dec. 1 after being at Shire for nearly seven years. He succeeds Dr. Alexandre Lebeaut, who will be retiring by year-end. Mayer will report directly to David Meek, Ipsen’s CEO, and will be based out of the company’s U.S. site in Cambridge, Massachusetts. FierceBiotech
> David Altarac, M.D., M.P.A., will become Entasis’ new chief medical officer next week and will replace Robin Isaacs, M.D., a four-year veteran of the company since its spinout, who is retiring. (Though he will be an adviser on the later-stage programs as they gear up for a regulatory review.) In his new role, Altarac will be responsible for leading clinical development for Entasis’ lead programs, sulbactam-durlobactam and zoliflodacin, currently in phase 3, as well as the ETX0282CPDP program (which has had its issues), all the while boosting the biotech’s pipeline of pathogen-targeted antimicrobials. FierceBiotech
> Y. Peter Li, Ph.D., has been named CEO and board director and Wilmington, Delaware-based NiKang Therapeutics. Li is the co-founder and founding CEO of Turning Point Therapeutics, where he served as chairman and CEO from 2013 to 2018 and continued to serve as a director until April 2019. Prior to Turning Point, Li served as executive VP at Epitomics. Release
> Boulder-based Biodesix announced that current COO Scott Hutton will become CEO on Jan. 1. Current CEO David Brunel will assume the role of chairman. Brunel is the co-founder of Biodesix and has led the company for more than 13 years. Release
> In a shakeup at the top at Ovid Therapeutics, Amit Rakhit, M.D., CMO and R&D head, has been promoted to president. Rakhit will retain his title as CMO. Timothy Daly has also been promoted to executive VP of finance to oversee the company’s operations, finance and IT, and will retain his title as treasurer. Release
> San Diego-based Neurana Pharmaceuticals has appointed Randall Kaye, M.D., as CMO. Kaye was previously CMO of Click Therapeutics and prior to Click served as CSO of SSI Strategy. Release
> Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Glympse Bio has pegged Tracey Dawson, Ph.D., as CCO and head of strategy. Dawson joins Glympse from Biogen, where she was VP of global product development and commercialization for the multiple sclerosis franchise. Prior to that, Dawson was at Shire as group VP and head U.S. genetic diseases franchise and previously spent six years at Genentech. Release (PDF)
> Jennifer Herron has been named CCO at ADC Therapeutics. Before joining ADC, Herron was executive VP and CCO at Immunogen and held earlier leadership roles with MorphoSys US, Ariad Pharmaceuticals, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Novartis Oncology and SmithKline Beecham Oncology. Release
> San Francisco-based Imago BioSciences appointed James D. Watson as CBO. Watson most recently served as CBO at Sigilon Therapeutics. Prior to Sigilon, Watson was CBO for Alvine Pharmaceuticals and CEO of a San Francisco-based boutique investment bank focused on mergers, acquisitions, partnering and raising capital for life science companies. Release
> Boston-based Albireo Pharma has tapped Michelle Graham as chief human resources officer. Graham comes to Albireo from Tesaro, where she served as senior VP and chief human resources officer. Prior to Tesaro, Graham spent three years as senior VP and chief human resources officer at Parexel International. Release
> Uniondale, New York-based Angion is fleshing out its senior management team with the appointments of: Sheryl Bauer, Ph.D., as VP of program and alliance management and quality assurance; Shakil Aslam, Ph.D., as VP of translational research; Deborah Gouveia as VP of clinical operations; Ruth Turner as VP of global and regulatory affairs; and Maureen Curran as VP of pharmacovigilance and risk management. Release