November 8, 2017 / 2:14 PM / a year ago

GSK nabs Calico scientist Barron as new R&D head, Vallance quits

LONDON, Nov 8 (Reuters) - GlaxoSmithKline has appointed Hal Barron, research head at Alphabet-funded Calico, as its new president of R&D, replacing Patrick Vallance, who will take up a top science job for the British government, the company said on Wednesday.

Vallance’s departure had been expected after a source familiar with the matter said last week he was quitting to become Britain’s chief scientific adviser.

His planned exit, at the end of March 2018 after Barron joins on Jan. 1, comes as GSK’s new Chief Executive Emma Walmsley plans a major shake-up in the pharmaceuticals division, arguing the group needs to do better in drug development by adopting a sharper commercial focus. (Reporting by Ben Hirschler; Editing by Kate Kelland)

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