GlaxoSmithKline has poached a Pfizer vaccine executive after failing to bring its own Covid jab to market during the pandemic.
In a statement released today, the pharmaceuticals giant announced that Phil Dormitzer will be joining the company as global head of vaccines and R&D effective this Friday.
Phil joins from Pfizer where he was vice president and chief scientific officer and headed up the team which produced Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine, one of the most widely used vaccines in Britain.
Commenting on the appointment, Dr Barron of GSK said: “I am delighted to have Phil, a renowned vaccinologist and scientific leader, join GSK.
“The importance of vaccines has never been clearer, and the pace of technological innovation has rarely been greater,” Barron added.
GSK lagged behind in the race to produce a Covid vaccine during the pandemic. Instead of designing its own, it offered an “adjuvant” to boost the efficacy of other vaccines, including one developed by French drugmaker Sanofi.
However, the joint project with Sanofi has not passed phase three of clinical trials meaning that the UK’s leading vaccine producer still does not have a Covid jab on the market.
Meanwhile, the UK’s other major pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca, which was previously a much smaller player than GSK, has produced 2bn doses of its jab which was rolled out as part of a non profit initiative.
GSK’s share price is down by 0.51 per cent today.