The Stories That Shine

Feature
Article
Pharmaceutical ExecutivePharmaceutical Executive: September 2023
Volume 44
Issue 9

One of the most special things about Pharmaceutical Executive®, in my opinion, is when people share their stories—where they came from; how their upbringing or education or background impacted their desire to work in pharma; any personal ties to their work, such as finding new treatments in a specific disease state due to a loved one having been impacted by that same disease; and just generally sharing their passion for their work. As someone who’s worked in pharma journalism for many years, there’s something extraordinary to hear about the why for individuals.

Meg Rivers

Meg Rivers
Managing Editor
Pharmaceutical Executive

That isn’t any less true for Lisa LeCointe-Cephas, SVP, chief ethics and compliance officer and office of general counsel, human health, Merck. In this issue, our executive profile, written by Lisa Henderson, features LeCointe-Cephas. Prior to working in pharma, LeCointe-Cephas set out to be a doctor and pivoted to become a lawyer due to her interest in people and what makes them tick. She worked in securities litigation and white-collar criminal defense, specifically for Kirkland & Ellis LLP. As you can imagine, her experiences there impacted how she approaches leadership in her work at Merck, specifically about how to communicate effectively. She also emphasized the importance of not focusing on negative thoughts when you “fail” and make mistakes but instead focusing on how to do things better next time. She also adopted a stop-drop-roll mantra, which I found really interesting and unique. But I won’t spoil that one for you.

Also in this month’s issue is our annual Product Launch coverage. We feature five drugs that our editorial board and team thought were especially impactful in the industry and to the lives of patients:

  • Camzyos (mavacamten): For adults with symptomatic obstructive hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (obstructive HCM). (Bristol Myers Squibb)
  • Enhertu (fam-trastuzumab - deruxtecan-nxki): For adults who have human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-positive breast cancer that cannot be removed by surgery or that spread to other parts of the body. Patients have had prior anti-HER2 breast cancer treatment for metastatic disease or have breast cancer that has come back during or within six months of finishing treatment for early-stage breast cancer. There are additional indications on the Enhertu website. (Daiichi Sankyo and AstraZeneca)
  • Rebyota (fecal microbiota, live-jslm): For adults for the prevention of recurrence of Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI) following antibiotic treatment for recurrent CDI. (Ferring Pharmaceuticals)
  • Sunlenca (lenacapavir): For adults, used alongside other human immunodeficiency virus-1 (HIV-1) medicines to treat HIV-1 infection in patients who 1) have received HIV-1 medicines in the past, 2) have an HIV-1 virus resistant to HIV-1 medicines, and 3) whose current HIV-1 treatments aren’t working for them. (Gilead Sciences)
  • Tzield (teplizumab-mzwv) injection: For adults and pediatric patients with stage 2 type 1 diabetes (T1D). It’s a CD3-directed monoclonal antibody indicated to delay the onset of stage 3 T1D. (Provention Bio, a Sanofi company)

Thank you to everyone who contributed insights, articles, and time to this issue. Without you all, we couldn’t do what we do!