13 Mar 2013, BioSpectrum Bureau , BioSpectrum
Singapore: Japan-based Santen Pharmaceutical appointed Dr Naveed Shams as president, CEO and chief scientific officer of Santen. Prior to this new appointment, Dr Shams was VP and head of Global Clinical Development and Medical Affairs (GCD&MA) of the company.
Dr Shams received his medical degree from Dow Medical College in Karachi, Pakistan, and his PhD in microbiology and immunology from the University of South Carolina, US. After completing a fellowship in Cornea and External Disease at the Schepens Eye Research Institute and Department of Ophthalmology, Harvard Medical School, US, he served on the research faculty in the department. Dr Shams joined Santen three years ago. His industry experience spans 19 years across multiple therapeutic areas and includes tenures with Genentech, Novartis Ophthamics, Opko Health, On Demand Therapeutics and Storz Ophthalmics. While at Genentech, Dr Shams led the clinical team responsible for the development and approval of Ranibizumab (Lucentis).
Mr Akihiro Tsujimura, who has been president and CEO of Santen since 2010, will become the head of Santen's Asia division, including China and Korea Business Units. Regarding the change, Mr Akira Kurokawa, president and CEO of Santen, noted that, "Under Aki's leadership, we have made significant strides in expanding our global drug development and business development capabilities in the US. He was instrumental in the establishment of the Global Clinical Development and Medical Affairs Group in the US, and under his leadership, worldwide development of DE-109 for the treatment of non-infectious, chronic, posterior uveitis began in 2011."
Mr Kurokawa noted that this change in management structure supports an increased focus on the global development of Santen's pipeline and the critical role that the US organization is playing in Santen's globalization initiative. "Dr Shams is a highly respected scientist with expertise in developing and commercializing ophthalmic drugs globally. His experience as a global R&D professional should prove invaluable as we continue to grow our business worldwide," stated Mr Kurokawa.
Dr Shams commented, "The US subsidiary of Santen will leverage its assets to successfully commercialize differentiated products to meet the needs of our patients and their ophthalmologists. We will strive to accelerate the development of Santen's pipeline. I look forward to working with our partners, both internal and external, to accomplish this."