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New head of oncology for Astellas Pharma Europe

Published on: 16/08/11

Astellas Pharma has appointed Dr Christopher Thomson as executive director of its new European Oncology Unit.  

Dr Thomson will lead Astellas Pharma Europe’s development of the unit, which forms a core part of the company’s mid-term management plan for the period 2010-15.

He will take up the newly-created position after three years as director of business development for the European section of the company.

Dr Thomson said: “This is a very exciting opportunity to spearhead Astellas Pharma Europe’s move into oncology, an area in which I believe we have the expertise, resources and relationships to make a real contribution to creating a brighter future for patients.

“We have already started to build relationships with oncologists in Europe through our promotion of Eligard for prostate cancer and have recently entered into a licensing agreement to expand the territories in which we commercialise the product.”

Ken Jones, president and chief executive of Astellas Europe, said: “We are excited that Chris will be heading up this vitally important area.

“He has been involved in key negotiations with our partners and we are committed to developing a portfolio of treatments urgently to fulfil the unmet medical needs that exist in oncology.”

Dr Thomson has a degree in Bacteriology and a PhD in medical microbiology from Edinburgh University, where he held several research positions prior to being appointed Domagk Lecturer in Chemotherapy.

He started his career in the pharma industry as a sales representative with Schwarz Pharmaceuticals before gaining senior positions within Bayer at an affiliate and global level, later working for analysts IMS Health.

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