Biogen promoted Priya Singhal, M.D., M.P.H. as EVP, head of development Thursday morning.

Singhal, who has served as head of global safety and regulatory sciences and interim head of research and development (R&D) at Biogen, will report directly to Biogen CEO Christopher Viehbacher as part of the new role.

Viehbacher himself is new to Biogen, having been appointed as CEO in November to replace outgoing CEO Michel Vounatsos. Viehbacher formerly led Sanofi for six years and spent 20 years at GSK.

“Throughout her tenure at Biogen, Priya has demonstrated excellent leadership and judgement. In this new role, Priya will focus on delivering on our development programs while working closely with a new dedicated head of Research to strengthen Biogen’s translational science capabilities,” Viehbacher said in a statement. “We believe having two dedicated leaders will enhance productivity in bringing to patients worldwide medicines to treat some of the most challenging diseases, while assuring better risk management and resource stewardship.”

Singhal rejoined Biogen in 2020 and previously oversaw R&D in the Japan and China markets. Before returning to the company, she was the head of R&D and manufacturing at Zafgen Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company. Prior to her first stint at Biogen, Singhal was the VP, medical affairs at Vertex Pharmaceuticals and started her career at Millennium Pharmaceuticals.

Singhal’s promotion comes at a pivotal time for Biogen.

One week ago, a congressional probe found that the 2021 approval of the company’s controversial Alzheimer’s drug Aduhelm was “rife with irregularities.”

The report, which was put together by the House Committee on Oversight and Reform as well as the Committee on Energy and Commerce, found that Biogen and the Food and Drug Administration had poorly documented meetings regarding Aduhelm. Additionally, the company allegedly had “inappropriate” collaboration on an FDA adcomm briefing document and an overly broad marketing playbook for the beleaguered drug.

On Friday, the FDA is slated to decide the fate of lecanemab, another Alzheimer’s treatment that Biogen created in tandem with Eisai. According to Biogen, the drug met the primary endpoint in its Clarity-AD trial in results that were shared at the Clinical Trials on Alzheimer’s disease conference at the end of 2022.