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Souza to Run Research at Biotech King Amgen

May 20, 1997|BARBARA MURPHY

Amgen Inc. has named Lawrence M. Souza, who helped develop one of the company's two main products, senior vice president of research.

Souza has a doctorate in molecular biology and previously served as vice president for molecular and cellular biology. He succeeds Daniel Vapnek, who announced his retirement from the giant Thousand Oaks biotechnology company last June.

Souza, who has been with Amgen since 1981, has served as director of exploratory programs and was responsible for the discovery of new product candidates with a focus on molecular, developmental and experimental biology. He was instrumental in the discovery and cloning of Neupogen, one of Amgen's two big moneymakers.

More recently, Souza has led Amgen's efforts in genetic research, including the identification in recent weeks of molecules that hold promise in the treatment of cancer, osteoporosis and other conditions.

"Larry has led several of Amgen's most significant drug discovery initiatives," said Gordon Binder, chairman and chief executive. "He is the ideal choice to lead Amgen's research efforts into the 21st century."

Souza received his bachelor's degree in 1975 from UC Berkeley. He later received his doctorate from UCLA, where he also earned a postdoctoral fellowship in microbiology and immunology.

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