Genzyme Hires Quality Control Executive

From Associated Press (January 8, 2010)

CAMBRIDGE, Mass._Biotechnology company Genzyme Corp. said Friday it hired Ron Branning as senior vice president of global product quality.

Branning will oversee quality control for Genzyme products made at 17 sites worldwide. He previously worked as vice president of quality and compliance and as chief compliance officer at Gilead Sciences Inc.

The move to hire Branning follows a year filled with manufacturing problems for Genzyme.

In June, the company shut down its manufacturing plant in the Boston neighborhood of Allston to clean up viral contamination that had been slowing down production of Cerezyme and Fabrazyme. The virus was not harmful to people, but the shutdown cost the company millions in revenue. Production restarted in September.

Meanwhile, in November, the Food and Drug Administration said it found tiny particles of trash in drugs made by Genzyme, including steel, rubber and fiber. The agency recommended that doctors closely inspect vials of Cerezyme, Fabrazyme, Myozyme , Aldurazyme and Thyrogen.

Cerezyme treats a rare enzyme disorder called Gaucher disease and Fabrazyme treats Fabry disease, an inherited disorder caused by the buildup of a particular type of fat in the body's cells.

On Monday, the company said it is contracting manufacturing for its key products to Hospira Inc. for an undisclosed amount.

Shares of Genzyme rose $1.99, or 3.9 percent, to $53.12 in morning trading. Shares have traded between $47.09 and $73.75 over the last 52 weeks.


Industry Veteran Joins Genzyme to Lead Lead Global Product Quality


Genzyme said today thirty-year plus bio/pharmaceutical veteran Ron Branning has joined as senior vice president of global product quality. He will be responsible for all 17 Genzyme sites.  Before Genzyme, he led the quality and compliance functions at Gilead Sciences.

Posted: January 2010


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