Dr. Ehlers will oversee Biogen’s global Research, Drug Discovery, Clinical Development, and Medical Affairs functions, defining the strategic direction for the company’s R&D organization and leading its efforts to develop therapies for patients with few or no treatment options. Dr. Ehlers will report to George Scangos, Ph.D., chief executive officer, and will be a member of the Biogen management team. He will begin his tenure at Biogen in late May.
“I am thrilled to have Mike join us,” said Dr. Scangos. “We conducted a thorough, global search, and I am convinced that we have found the right leader to build on our already outstanding R&D team. Mike is a brilliant neuroscientist, having made major contributions to our understanding of the biology of neurons; he is an established R&D leader who has excelled in both academic and corporate settings; and he has demonstrated the ability to translate science into important new medicines.”
“As our understanding of human biology advances at an incredible pace, I am confident that Mike will keep Biogen at the forefront of discovery and enhance our ability to transform our research into treatments that make a meaningful difference in the lives of patients,” continued Dr. Scangos. “I am excited about the future of Biogen R&D and about Mike’s ability to elevate Biogen’s work to an even higher level.”
Dr. Ehlers joins Biogen from Pfizer, where he served as group senior vice president for BioTherapeutics R&D and chief scientific officer for the company’s Neuroscience and Pain Research Unit. Dr. Ehlers led Pfizer’s Cambridge and Boston research sites and was responsible for a network of collaborations with major academic and government institutions.
“Biogen is a recognized leader in applying the highest quality science to critical health issues in neurodegenerative and rare diseases,“ said Dr. Ehlers. “I am excited and honored to lead this remarkable team, and I look forward to working with them to convert groundbreaking science into meaningful treatments for people with life-altering diseases.”
Prior to joining Pfizer in 2010, Dr. Ehlers was the George Barth Geller Professor of Neurobiology and an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute at Duke University Medical Center, where he pioneered studies on neuronal organelles and the trafficking of neurotransmitter receptors. He holds M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and has authored more than 100 scientific papers.
Through cutting-edge science and medicine, Biogen discovers, develops and delivers worldwide innovative therapies for people living with serious neurological, autoimmune and rare diseases. Founded in 1978, Biogen is one of the world’s oldest independent biotechnology companies and patients worldwide benefit from its leading multiple sclerosis and innovative hemophilia therapies. For more information, please visit www.biogen.com. Follow us on Twitter.