Global Alliance for TB Drug Development Appoints Veteran Pharmaceutical Executive as New Chief Executive

The Global Alliance for TB Drug Development (TB Alliance), a not-for-profit product development partnership accelerating the discovery and development of new drugs to fight tuberculosis (TB), today announced the appointment of Dr. Jerome Premmereur as President and Chief Executive Officer.

Dr. Premmereur is the former Vice President of Medical Risk Management and former Vice President of U.S. Medical Affairs, both at sanofi-aventis, as well as former Senior Vice President of Aventis Global Medical Affairs.

“As we move closer to our goal of developing lifesaving new TB treatments, the TB Alliance is pleased to appoint a leader who will continue our momentum, strengthen and expand the largest TB drug pipeline in history, and help realize our mission of saving millions of lives lost needlessly to this disease,” said Dr. Gijs Elzinga, Chairman of the Board of the TB Alliance.

“We believe Dr. Premmereur’s drug development experience, his understanding of the international regulatory environment and his ability to lead a team of top scientists and policy experts make him the clear choice to guide us to success,” he said.

Dr. Elzinga added that Dr. Premmereur’s knowledge of the pharmaceutical industry, gained from two decades working in the sector here and in France, would be extremely useful in managing the TB Alliance’s existing pharmaceutical partnerships, and forging new ones.

“This is a position that will require me to apply everything I have learned over the last 30 years of drug development and business development, and I could not think of a more important way to use my skills,” Dr. Premmereur said. “I understand the gravity of our mission and the hurdles we face, and I look forward to working with one of the best teams in the world to meet this challenge.”

Dr. Elzinga noted that the TB Alliance, under the leadership of outgoing President and CEO Dr. Maria C. Freire and the scientific direction of Research and Development Director Dr. Mel Spigelman, has become the international catalyst for new TB drug development, thanks to a network of global partners, a diverse team of top professionals, and funding of close to $200 million from foundations and governments around the world.

Dr. Premmereur thanked his predecessor Dr. Freire, who is leaving the post after six years with the TB Alliance to become President of the Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation.

“Tremendous progress has been made in the search for new TB drugs since the TB Alliance was founded in 2000,” Dr. Premmereur said. “People throughout the world are looking to us to replace the current, decades-old, cumbersome regimen. I am confident that we will succeed; millions of lives depend on it.”

Every year, more than 1.6 million people worldwide die from TB. It is estimated that the bacillus that causes TB infects one-third of the world’s population and the threat of drug-resistance is growing at an alarming rate. New, faster-acting, simpler drug regimens are critical to defeating this ancient disease.

Dr. Premmereur, 53, has focused much of his career on development of drugs for cardiovascular, thrombotic, cancer, metabolic and infectious diseases.

In addition to drug development, Dr Premmereur has significant international regulatory expertise and knowledge of the registration path for new drugs in at least 60 countries. He has managed a team of more than 500 in the United States, and practiced as a board-certified cardiologist in France.

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