Pfizer taps Jansen to lead R&D programs for vaccines

Pfizer, Inc. named Kathrin U. Jansen its new senior vice president of the Vaccine Research and Development Unit on Monday.

Previously the chief scientific officer at Pfizer’s Vaccine Research and Early Development Research Unit, Jansen’s new responsibilities will include leading all of the research and development programs for Pfizer’s vaccines. She will assume her new role on June 1, 2015.

Jansen first joined Pfizer when she began to work at its subsidiary, Wyeth, in 2006. While at Wyeth, her duties included leading vaccine research that focused on infectious diseases and clinical testing.

“With over two decades of experience as a vaccine researcher, Kathrin is a world-class scientist with a remarkable track-record of delivering first-in-class vaccines in areas with serious unmet patient need such as human papillomavirus infection and Neisseria meningitidis serogroup B,” Dr. Mikael Dolsten, president of Worldwide Research and Development at Pfizer, said. “She has also played a pivotal role in advancing Pfizer’s Staphylococcus aureus and Clostridium difficile vaccine candidate programs, the licensure of Prevnar 13 in both infant and adult indications, and the development of the diagnostic assays that enabled the CAPiTAi. I am confident that she will continue to lead our Vaccine Research organization with a sharp focus on delivering potential vaccine breakthroughs for infectious diseases.”

Jansen received her doctoral degree in microbiology biochemistry and genetics from Phillips Universität Marburg Germany. Her postdoctoral work included stints at the Mikrobiologie in Marburg and working with Professor G.P. Hess at Cornell University.

Jansen has been adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania School Of Medicine since 2010.

“There is a remarkable scientific opportunity in vaccine research ahead of us, and Pfizer’s vaccine research and development team is fully focused on addressing major neonatal infant, adolescent and adult infections, and pioneering therapeutic immunotherapy across diseases including cancer,” Jansen said. “We are building on the rich foundation of our scientific heritage with Prevnar and other vaccines to design and develop vaccine candidates that are unique - and most importantly - with the potential to significantly improve patients’ lives.”

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