Researchers join Biogen Idec to advance drug discovery for neurodegenerative diseases


Two leading neuroscientists have joined Biogen Idec to advance its research in neurodegenerative diseases. Christopher Henderson joins as vice president, neurology. Richard Ransohoff joins as senior research fellow, neuroimmunology. The addition of these top researchers bolsters Biogen Idec’s discovery engine.

Henderson joins Biogen Idec from Columbia University, where he was the Gurewitsch and Vidda Foundation professor of rehabilitation and regenerative medicine with joint appointments in the departments of Pathology and Cell Biology, Neurology and Neuroscience. Ransohoff joins Biogen Idec from the Cleveland Clinic, where he served as director of the Neuroinflammation Research Center in the Department of Neurosciences of the Lerner Research Institute; professor of Molecular Medicine at the Lerner College of Medicine at Case Western Reserve University; and staff neurologist at the Mellen Center for Multiple Sclerosis Treatment and Research.

Biogen Idec has extensive discovery efforts focused on neurodegenerative and neuroimmune diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and multiple sclerosis. Henderson and Ransohoff will work collaboratively within Biogen Idec’s research and development organisation to identify and accelerate the development of new product candidates. Both will report directly to Spyros Artavanis-Tsakonas, senior vice president and chief scientific officer of Biogen Idec.

“Transformative medicines result from transformative science,” says Artavanis-Tsakonas. “We are bringing together some of the brightest minds in research to create new ways of looking at devastating neurological diseases where there are few, if any, effective therapies. Chris and Richard will help accelerate our efforts to bring innovative new medicines to patients who desperately need them.”