Please Note: Blog posts are not selected, edited or screened by Seeking Alpha editors.

Heavy Hitters Coming To Vivus, Gearing Up For Qnexa Approval!

|Includes: Vivus, Inc. (VVUS)
VIVUS Announced Expansion of Management Team

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., March 27, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE)

VVUS a biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the development and commercialization of novel therapeutic products, today announced the addition of several key employees and expansion of the senior management team in anticipation of the commercialization of Qnexa®, if approved. New hires in the commercial group include Chris Thompson as national sales director and Alfred Tenuto as senior director of market access.
VIVUS has also added Santosh T. Varghese, M.D., as vice president of medical affairs. Barbara Troupin, M.D., MBA, has been promoted to vice president, scientific communication & risk management, and Timothy E. Morris will continue in his role as chief financial officer and will assume responsibility for business development as senior vice president global corporate development and finance. VIVUS has also expanded executive management in its clinical group with the addition of Roman V. Dvorak, M.D., Ph.D, who will serve as senior director, clinical development.

"The addition of experienced professionals in the commercial, medical affairs, and clinical groups will be invaluable as we prepare for the commercialization of Qnexa, if approved. Chris, Alfred and Santosh represent over 70 years of successful pharmaceutical commercial experience and are a welcome addition to our team," commented Leland Wilson, chief executive officer of VIVUS.

"Barbara will continue to work with key opinion leaders and will head up the risk management responsibilities for Qnexa, Tim will lead our partnering efforts worldwide, and Roman will assist with the design and implementation of a post-approval Qnexa cardiovascular outcomes study."

Chris Thompson joins VIVUS as the national sales director after a successful 23-year career with Amgen, most recently as the vice president, sales of the Bone Health Business Unit. In this role, Mr. Thompson recruited and managed a team of over 545 employees, including 500 endocrine and primary care sales representatives. During his career at Amgen, Mr. Thompson rose through the ranks from a field sales representative to executive management positions. In addition, he has sales and sales management experience with Baxter International and Johnson & Johnson.

Alfred Tenuto joins VIVUS as the senior director of market access after a successful 13-year career with Eli Lilly & Company, most recently as director of trade. In this role, Mr. Tenuto was responsible for the distribution network and relationships with wholesalers and specialty pharmacies. At VIVUS, he will manage the Qnexa distribution network and be responsible for Federal and State public policy and reimbursement with private third party payors. In addition, he has pharmaceutical market access, pharmacy and national accounts experience with ALZA.

Dr. Varghese joins VIVUS as vice president medical affairs. Dr. Varghese comes from Elan Corporation, where he was responsible for the global and U.S. medical affairs bio-neurology therapeutic group for Tysabri. Prior to Elan, he built and led medical affairs teams responsible for large brands, such as Allegra and Nasacort at Aventis/Sanofi-Aventis; Clarinex/Claritin, Nasonex, Integrilin, Zetia, Vytorin, and other compounds within Schering-Plough/Merck. At VIVUS, he will establish the medical affairs group for Qnexa and will provide scientific and medical brand strategy to the commercial team. In addition, he will supervise and provide direction to field based teams and assume responsibility for safety and interaction with the FDA.

Dr. Troupin has been promoted to the newly created position of vice president of scientific communication and risk management. Dr. Troupin has been vice president of scientific communication and risk management since February 2012. Prior to that, she held senior director roles in medical affairs and in clinical development at VIVUS initially joining the company in April 2006. Before joining VIVUS (VVUS:$20.65,00$-0.37,00-1.76%) , Dr. Troupin was the medical director for Profil Institute for Clinical Research in San Diego, a niche Phase 1 site focused on complex clinical trials in diabetes and obesity. Prior to that she was the medical director for Radiant Research in San Diego for five years and was the principal investigator on more than 150 cardiovascular and metabolic clinical studies. In her new role, Dr. Troupin will supervise development of publications and presentations, advise in the development of Scientific Symposia and Advisory Boards, and establish and support communications with medical and scientific key opinion leaders and advocates. In addition, she will take responsibility for the implementation of the Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies (REMS) for Qnexa.

In addition to his current role as senior vice president finance and chief financial officer, Mr. Morris assumes responsibility for global corporate development, including partnering efforts for Qnexa.