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Big cardio is back in focus

Last fall at ESC it became apparent that big cardio diseases are back in vogue. Merck’s picked up on this by making cardio a top growth sector in the pipeline. And we’ve been seeing a surge in new R&D projects. All this after big costs and low success rates forced a rethink in Big Pharma. What’s happening now to inspire such a big change? Lei Lei Wu is digging in.

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Sameer Bansilal

Sameer Bansilal

Vice President U.S. Medical Affairs, Cardiovascular, Bayer

Sameer Bansilal, MD, MS, is the Vice President of US Medical Affairs for the Cardiovascular and Renal Franchise for Bayer Pharmaceuticals. He is an experienced Medical Affairs leader, practicing clinician, and investigator with a broad range of expertise in cardiovascular medicine and outcomes research. For Bayer, Dr. Bansilal oversees the thrombosis and cardiovascular portfolios and provides oversight for pipeline assets and Business Development and Licensing activities. He is also a practicing attending physician at the James. J. Peters Veteran Affairs Medical Center where he sees patients part-time.

Dr. Bansilal received his Graduate Degree in Medical Education at Seth G.S. Medical College and King Edward Memorial Hospital in Mumbai, India, and his Masters in Clinical Research from Mount Sinai School of Medicine of New York University. Bansilal has 17 years of clinical and research experience and has published 80 peer reviewed publications. He has a proven record of driving innovation and growth, both in academia and industry. Dr. Bansilal has leadership experience across the medical affairs spectrum; from business development and in-licensing activities, early product planning to regulatory approvals, pre-launch market development to launch pull through, and management of mature, in-market assets.

David Soergel

David Soergel

Global Head, Cardiovascular, Renal and Metabolism Development Unit, Novartis

David Soergel, MD is Global Head of Drug Development for the Cardiovascular, Renal, and Metabolic disease area at Novartis. Prior to this role, Dr. Soergel spent nine years at biotechnology companies working across therapy areas, building high-performing development teams and conducting complex multi-stage adaptive trials. He has been involved in development of program strategy and design, execution and reporting of clinical trials in acute heart failure, infectious diseases, acute and chronic pain, and renal diseases. He previously worked in early stage clinical development and translational medicine at GlaxoSmithKline, leading programs from the discovery organization into the clinic and through proof of concept. Dr. Soergel originally trained in pediatrics, pediatric cardiology and heart failure and transplant at Johns Hopkins Hospital and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. During his cardiology fellowship, he completed an NIH-sponsored NRSA post-doctoral fellowship at Johns Hopkins studying myofilament function.

John Whang

John Whang

Vice President, US Medical Cardiovascular & Established Brands Bristol-Myers Squibb

John joined BMS in April of 2021 and serves as a core member of the US Medical and USM Cardiovascular Leadership teams. John is responsible for senior leadership of the US Cardiovascular Franchise medical strategies for Eliquis, Mavacamten, and established brands. In addition to providing senior leadership to his teams, he overees data generation and CV pipeline launches, closely collaborating with US Commercial, WW Medical, Development, and external partners to advance the science and appropriately bring our medicines to patients.

Prior to BMS, John was Head, Integrated Evidence at Janssen Pharmaceuticals, where he presided over the development and translation of real-world, health economic, and randomized clinical trial data for portfolio products in the therapeutic areas of cardiovascular and metabolism. While there, he was also the architect for pivotal scientific studies of the first indication-seeking, fully decentralized randomized interventional trial in collaboration with key external partners. Previous to Janssen, John was Executive Director, US Medical at Amgen where he oversaw cardiovascular assets in lipids and heart failure.

Before his career in pharmaceuticals, John was President of Real Endpoints, a health-care advisory and analytics firm that helps the life sciences enhance appropriate access to innovative therapies; Senior Engagement Manager at McKinsey & Co.; and Director of Cardiovascular Services and Attending Cardiologist at Morristown Medical Center.

John is Board-certified in Cardiovascular Diseases, having trained at New York Columbia Presbyterian Hospital in cardiology and internal medicine. He received his MD from Columbia / Vagelos School of Medicine in New York, NY and his AB from Harvard College in Cambridge, MA. He and his wife, Lauren, live in Mountain Lakes, NJ and have four children and a Havanese (Leo).

Joerg Koglin

Joerg Koglin

Vice President of Global Clinical Development, Merck Research Laboratories

Joerg Koglin, MD, PhD, is Vice President, Global Clinical Development, Merck Research Laboratories and serves as the Global Therapeutic Area Head for Cardiovascular & Respiratory Clinical Research. Dr. Koglin joined Merck Research Laboratories in 2007 in the Late Stage Global Clinical Development organization and has been involved in various early and late development programs for heart failure, pulmonary hypertension, atherosclerosis, hypertension, ischemia/reperfusion, thrombosis and atrial fibrillation compounds. In his current role at Merck, Dr. Koglin provides clinical and medical oversight for all cardiovascular development programs and supports overall cardiovascular strategy and business development.

Dr. Koglin is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Cardiology. He spent more than 10 years as an academia-based physician with a junior faculty position at the Department of Cardiology, University of Munich, Germany. Dr. Koglin received his MD from the University of Heidelberg, Germany and his PhD from the University of Munich, Germany following a postdoctoral fellowship at the Cardiovascular Biology Laboratory of the Harvard School of Public Health.

Lei Lei Wu

Lei Lei Wu

NEWS REPORTER, Endpoints News

Lei Lei (pronounced "Lay Lay") joined Endpoints as a news reporter in 2022. She graduated from Cornell University, where she studied biochemistry and had a column in the student paper. She splits her time between New York and New Jersey, and outside of work, you might find her concocting new coffee creations or binge-watching sci-fi shows.