Kathrin Jansen, Ph.D., is a senior vice president, head of Vaccine Research and Development at Pfizer Inc., and a member of Pfizer’s worldwide research and development leadership team. Jansen oversees a fully integrated global vaccines research and development organization, with responsibilities ranging from discovery to registration and post-marketing commitments of first-in-class or best-in-class vaccines to prevent or treat diseases of significant unmet medical need.
Jansen’s recent accomplishments include the global licensures of Prev(e)nar13® to prevent pneumococcal diseases and the development and licensure of Trumenba®, the first vaccine licensed in the United States to prevent invasive disease caused by Neisseria meningitidis serogroup B.
Before the Wyeth Pharmaceuticals acquisition by Pfizer in 2009, Jansen served as senior vice president at Wyeth and on the company’s R&D executive committee, responsible for vaccine discovery, early development, and clinical testing operations.
Jansen also briefly worked at Vaxgen as Chief Scientific Officer and Senior Vice President for Research and Development with responsibility for the company’s late-stage development programs.
Prior to joining Vaxgen, Jansen spent 12 years at Merck Research Laboratories, where she directed or supported a number of vaccine efforts, including Merck’s novel bacterial vaccine programs and viral vaccine programs (rotavirus; herpes zoster/shingles; and mumps, measles and rubella). While at Merck, Jansen initiated and led the development of Gardasil®, the world’s first cervical cancer vaccine.
Jansen received her doctoral degree in microbiology, biochemistry and genetics from Phillips Universitaet, Germany, in 1984. Following completion of her formal training, she continued her postdoctoral training at Cornell University, working on the structure and function of the acetylcholine receptor. She then joined the Glaxo Institute for Molecular Biology in Switzerland, where she focused on basic studies of a potential drug target receptor to treat allergies. Jansen became an adjunct professor at the Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania in 2010.