BOSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (Nasdaq: VRTX) today announced that Reshma Kewalramani, M.D., has been appointed Chief Medical Officer and Executive Vice President, Global Medicines Development and Medical Affairs, effective April 1, 2018. Dr. Kewalramani currently serves as Senior Vice President, Clinical Development and Medical Affairs at Vertex and will succeed Jeffrey A. Chodakewitz, M.D., who is retiring from his role as Chief Medical Officer and Executive Vice President, Global Medicines Development and Medical Affairs. Dr. Chodakewitz will remain with Vertex as a senior advisor through early 2019.
Since joining Vertex in 2014, Dr. Chodakewitz has been an inspirational senior medical leader and has played an instrumental part in the company’s advances in cystic fibrosis (CF) and in expanding Vertex’s development pipeline. Prior to Vertex, Dr. Chodakewitz had an outstanding 20-year career at Merck, where he led the successful development of multiple medicines and vaccines across a number of therapeutic areas.
“I would like to personally thank Jeff for his leadership and dedication to improving the lives of people with cystic fibrosis and other serious and life-threatening diseases,” said Jeffrey Leiden, M.D., Ph.D., Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Vertex. “He has played a critical role in leading multiple successful clinical development efforts at Vertex, and I’m pleased that we will continue to benefit from his guidance as a senior advisor over the next year as he transitions to retirement. I’m also delighted that Reshma has agreed to succeed Jeff as our Chief Medical Officer. Reshma’s depth of medical knowledge, paired with her experience and proven track record as a clinical leader at Vertex, makes her an ideal successor to Jeff. I look forward to working with Reshma to continue to advance our clinical development pipeline in cystic fibrosis and other serious diseases.”
“It has been an honor to lead Vertex’s clinical development efforts and to be a part of the significant advancement in treatments for cystic fibrosis patients over the last four years,” said Dr. Chodakewitz. “I have enjoyed working closely with Reshma since she joined the Company last year and am confident that Vertex will continue its success in pursuing innovative therapies under her leadership.”
“It’s a privilege to work at a company with such a relentless focus on science and deep commitment to improving the lives of patients and their families,” said Dr. Kewalramani. “I am excited to assume the role of CMO and continue our important work to help more people with cystic fibrosis and other serious diseases alongside the talented team at Vertex.”
Dr. Kewalramani is an accomplished leader and physician who has a track record of building strong teams, putting patients first, leading change and delivering results. Prior to joining Vertex in February 2017, Dr. Kewalramani spent over 12 years at Amgen where she most recently served as Vice President and Head of the U.S. Medical Organization. During her tenure at Amgen, Dr. Kewalramani held roles with increasing responsibility across Clinical Development and Medical Affairs and served in leadership positions involving research and development and commercialization activities across a variety of therapeutic areas. Dr. Kewalramani is the industry representative to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Endocrine and Metabolic Drug Advisory Committee and was on the inaugural Board of Directors of the Kidney Health Initiative. She completed her internship and residency in Internal Medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital and her fellowship in Nephrology at the Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital combined program. Dr. Kewalramani received her medical degree, with honors, from the Boston University School of Medicine and is also an alumnus of the Harvard Business School.
Vertex is a global biotechnology company that invests in scientific innovation to create transformative medicines for people with serious and life-threatening diseases. In addition to clinical development programs in CF, Vertex has more than a dozen ongoing research programs focused on the underlying mechanisms of other serious diseases.
Founded in1989 in Cambridge, Mass., Vertex's headquarters is now located in Boston's Innovation District. Today, the company has research and development sites and commercial offices in the United States, Europe, Canada and Australia. Vertex is consistently recognized as one of the industry's top places to work, including being named to Science magazine's Top Employers in the life sciences ranking for eight years in a row. For additional information and the latest updates from the company, please visit www.vrtx.com.