Go back

Pharma chief to lead UK government’s antivirals taskforce


New chair brings “wealth” of “crucial” industry expertise to speed up development of Covid-19 drugs

The UK government has appointed a former pharma sector executive as chair of its new R&D taskforce aimed at speeding up the development of antivirals for Covid-19 treatment.

The new chair, Eddie Gray, has held senior positions within the pharmaceutical industry, including as president of European pharmaceutical business at GlaxoSmithKline, and as a board member of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Pharmaceutical Industry.

He has been involved in the field of antivirals throughout his career for a number of diseases, such as flu.

Health secretary Matt Hancock said he was “delighted” about Gray’s appointment. “He is bringing to the taskforce a wealth of industry expertise that will be crucial in ensuring we are identifying treatments effective at the earliest stages of exposure to this terrible virus,” Hancock said. “I look forward to working with him going forward.”

Gray said he was “excited” to be leading the taskforce. “The development of a strategy for individuals infected or exposed to Covid-19 is an important step to support and protect the gains made by the successful vaccination programme.”