GSK Nabs Boehringer Ingelheim's Chief Medical Officer Christopher Corsico

GlaxoSmithKline

Germany-based Boehringer Ingelheim announced earlier this week that Christopher Corsico, senior vice president, Corporate Division Medicine and chief medical officer, was leaving the company effective December 31. Today it was announced that Corsico will join UK-based GlaxoSmithKline to take on the new role of senior vice president of development.

Corsico joined Boehringer Ingelheim in April 1998 as a Pharmacovigilance Physician. He moved up in the company, leading the U.S. Pharmacovigilance program, then took on positions as U.S. Regulatory Head and Regional Medical Director for North America. He became Head of Corporate Division Quality, Regulatory, Pharmacovigilance and Epidemiology (QRPE) and Medicine in 2012. He was appointed to his current position at Boehringer Ingelheim in 2016.

Boehringer Ingelheim’s current Medical Director Germany, Thor Voigt, will take over Corsico’s role on October 1, 2018.

“We are grateful to Dr. Corsico for his valuable contributions during many years of service for Boehringer Ingelheim,” stated Allan Hillgrove, member of the board of managing directors for Boehringer Ingelheim’s Human Pharma Business Unit. “He has been instrumental for Boehringer Ingelheim’s drive for medical and patient focus. On behalf of the Board of Managing Directors, I wish him all the best for the future.”

Voigt has been with Boehringer Ingelheim since 1992 and took on his current position in 2015. Before that, he was Medical Director in the Netherlands and the U.S., and Global Head of Clinical Operations.

Corsico will be based in Stevenage, in the U.K., which is where GlaxoSmithKline’s research-and-develop group is located. He is expected to travel regularly to the company’s other research site in Philadelphia. At GSK, Corsico will report to research head Hal Barron, who joined GSK at the beginning of this year.

Late last week, Boehringer Ingelheim exercised an option to buy ViraTherapeutics, an EMBL Ventures portfolio company. Boehringer is paying $245 million for the company, headquartered in Innsbruck, Austria. ViraTherapeutics works on developing oncolytic viruses.

Earlier in the year, the two companies announced they were expanding their previous development partnership, launching a second oncolytic virus development program. There is currently only one oncolytic virus therapy on the market, Amgen’s Imlygic. Imlygic is a monotherapy, whereas most work in the field, including that of ViraTherapeutics, focuses on using oncolytic viruses in combination with immunotherapeutics such as checkpoint inhibitors.

Meanwhile, GSK, which is restructuring under Emma Walmsley, who took the reins about two years ago, is fielding multiple offers for its India-based Horlicks nutrition business. Bidders so far have included Nestle, Unilever and Coca-Cola. Other companies that have expressed an interest include Kellogg, and The Kraft Heinz. According to reports, Coca-Cola is bidding around $3.9 billion for the company.

Walmsley said in a statement, “With the recent new product launches, development of the new R&D approach and the successful buyout of the consumer business, we have evaluated the group’s cost base and what is required to deliver competitive long-term growth and performance in each of the group’s three businesses.”

Nutrition sales have declined by 7 percent at an annual equivalent rate but grew 1 percent at a couple equivalent rate. But in India, Horlicks has strong performance, with new products including Horlicks Protein +, launched earlier this year.

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