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Biogen Idec appoints new CEO

Biogen Idec has appointed George A Scangos, a veteran of Elelixis and Bayer, as the company's new CEO and a member of the board of directors

Biogen Idec has appointed George A Scangos, a veteran of Elelixis and Bayer, as the company's new CEO and a member of the board of directors, effective July 15. He succeeds James C Mullen, who is retiring after 20 years at the company.

Scangos joins Biogen Idec from the cancer drug development company Exelixis, where he has been president and CEO since 1996. Earlier, he spent a decade at Bayer, beginning with the company as a staff scientist, then becoming senior vice president of Research and Development, and finally advancing to the post of president of Bayer Biotechnology, where he had responsibility for research, business development, process development, manufacturing, engineering, and quality assurance of biological products.

He holds a PhD in microbiology and began his career as a professor at Johns Hopkins University.

Biogen Idec has three marketed products: the multiple sclerosis drugs Avonex (interferon beta-1a) and Tysabri (natalizumab), and Rituxan (rituximab), which is approved for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and rheumatoid arthritis. The company's pipeline includes more than 20 products in late-stage clinical development.

Scangos said his priorities as he begins his tenure will be to advance the firm's marketed products while preparing for the potential launch of five new products over a three-year period. He said he will also focus on forging new partnerships for the company and hiring a new head of R&D.

1st July 2010

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