Pfizer R&D to split into large and small molecule divisions

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Pfizer announced organizational plans for the company post-Wyeth acquisition, including a new focus on biopharmaceuticals.

According to a statement today, Pfizer will retain eight senior executives from Wyeth, and form two separate research organizations. One will focus on the discovery of small molecules and will be headed by Martin Mackay, currently president of Pfizer's global R&D. The second group will focus on large-molecule research—including vaccines—and will be led by Mikael Dolsten, currently president of Wyeth research.

Within the two R&D groups, Pfizer will task several chief scientific officers with specific areas of responsibility, including vaccine research (Emilio Emini, Wyeth's vaccine R&D head) and neuroscience research (Menelas Pangalos, Wyeth's head of discovery).

“Creating two distinct, but complementary, research organizations, led by the top scientist from each company, will provide sharper focus, less bureaucracy and clearer accountability in drug discovery,” said Jeff Kindler, Pfizer's CEO, in the statement.

Following the acquisition, Pfizer will organize itself into nine business areas:

• Primary care, led by Olivier Brandicourt (Pfizer)

• Specialty care and vaccines, led by Geno Germano (Wyeth)

• Emerging markets, led by Jean-Michel Halfon (Pfizer)

• Oncology, led by Garry Nicholson (Pfizer)

• Established products, led by David Simmons (Pfizer)

• Animal Health, led by Juan-Ramon Alaix (Pfizer)

• Capsugel, led by Guido Driesen (Pfizer)

• Consumer health, led by Paul Sturman (Wyeth)

• Nutritional health, led by Erica Mann (Wyeth) 

Pfizer and Wyeth expect the acquisition to be finalized “at the end of the third quarter, or during the fourth quarter of 2009,” according to the statement.

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