A pair of GlaxoSmithKline executives involved with the pharma giant's development of resveratrol-based drugs were disciplined after GSK found them moonlighting on the board of a nonprofit selling resveratrol supplements, TheStreet reports.
Christoph Westphal and Michelle Dipp joined Glaxo when it acquired Sirtris Pharmaceuticals, where they were principal executives, in 2008. Though Westphal and Dipp say they had informed the parent company of their involvement with the Healthy Lifespan Institute, apparently GSK was unaware the nonprofit sold resveratrol supplements at $540 for a year supply, as the website Xconomy noted Aug. 12.
Glaxo acquired Sirtris for $720 million in hopes that its red wine extract technology will eventually bear fruit and yield multi-billion-dollar pharmaceuticals. At present, resveratrol supplements are touted for anti-aging benefits.
"The Tan Sheet" looked at firms marketing supplements for cognitive support as they inch toward a longer-term goal of developing the same substances into drugs for Alzheimer's disease. However, experts note that plenty of regulatory, scientific and commercial hurdles stand between a supplement and an FDA-approved drug, as we reported in June.
- Dan Schiff (email@example.com)