Sector News

Novartis poaches Roche’s neuro and rare disease R&D lead, replacing Shanker

December 12, 2021
Life sciences

Novartis has been busy selling off its stake in Roche but quietly this month also got a little extra from its fellow Swiss native after nabbing Bob Baloh, M.D., Ph.D., to run its growing neuroscience division.

Baloh joins the company as Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research’s (NIBR’s) global head of the neuroscience disease area. He comes from a similar position at Roche, where he served as vice president and global head of research in neuroscience and rare diseases in the Pharmaceutical Research and Early Development division.

He had a relatively short stint at Roche—just a year—but spent nearly a decade before that at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in California as a renowned neurodegeneration and peripheral nervous system disease expert as well as a passionate physician-scientist.

Novartis also tells me he is a talented surfer, and that skill will be needed to ride the choppy waves of neuro that have caused so many to wipe out.

He comes amid a loss of neuro talent from the Big Pharma, and takes over from Gopi Shanker, Ph.D., who had been the NIBR’s head of neuroscience before leaving in May for a transfer-RNA-based gene therapy startup.

At Novartis, Baloh will help work on a host of diseases and disorders in a field beset with setbacks for the industry but containing some of human biology’s biggest unsolved problems.

Novartis is currently working on new therapies for spinal muscular atrophy, Rett syndrome, autism spectrum disorders, intellectual disabilities and epileptic encephalopathies as well as bipolar disorder, depression, substance use disorders and schizophrenia.

It’s also got its eyes on Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, frontotemporal dementia and several rare monogenic diseases along with multiple sclerosis.

by Ben Adams

Source: fiercebiotech.com

comments closed

Related News

May 26, 2024

From pharma to food: Vitafoods 2024 highlights

Life sciences

Beyond the vibrant displays and insightful discussions at Vitafoods 2024 stood the backdrop of a rapidly expanding nutraceutical market. With consumers increasingly seeking preventive healthcare solutions and natural alternatives to traditional medicine, the global nutraceutical industry has witnessed remarkable growth in recent years.

May 26, 2024

Genmab completes acquisition of ProfoundBio

Life sciences

Genmab has completed its $1.8 billion acquisition of ProfoundBio, a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing next-generation antibody-drug conjugates (ADC)s and ADC technologies for the treatment of cancers.

May 26, 2024

Merck to acquire life science company Mirus Bio

Life sciences

Merck has agreed to acquire US life sciences company Mirus Bio for $600 million (around €550 million) from Gamma Biosciences, a life sciences platform established by global investment firm KKR. Based in Madison, Wisconsin, Mirus Bio is a specialist in the development and commercialization of transfection reagents.

How can we help you?

We're easy to reach