Market Overview

What We Know About Trump's Potential Pick To Head The FDA

What We Know About Trump's Potential Pick To Head The FDA

Sources close to President-elect Donald Trump’s transition team have revealed that Dr. Scott Gottlieb could be the next head of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Jim O'Neill is also being considered for the position, several media outlets have previously reported.

All About Gottlieb

Scott Gottlieb is a 44-year-old physician who serves as resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and as a venture partner at New Enterprise Associates, one of the largest venture capital firms in the world.

Between 2005 and 2007, he held the spot of Deputy Commissioner of the FDA, after working as the senior advisor of FDA Commissioner Mark McClellan and director of medical policy development (2003–2004). Between the spring of 2004 when he left the FDA and 2005 when he returned, Gottlieb acted as senior adviser to the administrator of Medicare and Medicaid services during the new Medicare Drug Benefit implementation.

Here’s a link to his full CV.

Expert Reactions

While relatively experienced, especially for his young age, his last turn as a member of FDA leadership was not without controversy.

Soon after becoming the FDA's second-in-command, Gottlieb had to recuse himself from several pieces of FDA business due to his financial dealings with the corporate parties involved.

“The appointment comes out of nowhere,” said former FDA commissioner Donald Kennedy following Gottlieb's appointment as Deputy Commissioner.

Additional voices of concern from that time included Time magazine, stating, “Anything but a reassuring signal,“ and numerous media outlets have criticized his (current and past) ties with pharma behemoths like GlaxoSmithKline plc (ADR) (NYSE: GSK), Roche Holding Ltd. (ADR) (OTC: RHHBY), Sanofi SA (ADR) (NYSE: SNY), Eli Lilly and Co (NYSE: LLY) and Procter & Gamble Co (NYSE: PG), among others.

However, not everyone agrees with this dire view this time around. For instance, industry specialist Michael Gaba declared, "He leans right, he's got experience in the agency, he’s got the M.D. credential, and he’s outspoken.”

Keep tuned in for further news as the issue develops.

Image Credit: By The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (AOA Leadership Award - 9840) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


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