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BeiGene appoints new Head of Europe, Global Clinical Operations

Bringing over two decades of experience in oncology clinical development, the biotech’s new hire will work to advocate for innovation and patient-centric clinical development for the company’s European initiatives.

BeiGene Europe clinical operationsBeiGene Europe clinical operations

BeiGene has appointed Pilar de la Rocha as its new Head of Europe, Global Clinical Operations.

The biotech’s new appointment underlines its commitment to advancing clinical development initiatives in the European region. The company highlighted that 35 percent of patients enrolled in its clinical trials are based in Europe.

Pilar de la Rocha brings more than two decades of experience in oncology clinical development to the role, according to Beigene. This new hire follows its appointment of Dr Jan-Henrik Terwey as Vice President of Medical Affairs Europe in October 2023.

In an earlier EPR article on haematology/oncology clinical development, Dr Terwey described how BeiGene is seeking to address clinical development challenges, particularly in mitigating the impact of drug shortages on clinical trials in Europe. He asserted that the biotech plans to handle this by “operating our own manufacturing facilities for both small molecule medicines and large molecule biologics to support ongoing clinical research and global commercialisation of our internally developed medicines.”

Leading clinical operations in Europe

[since joining BeiGene in 2022 as the Global Head of Operational Excellence,] De la Rocha has championed impactful changes in clinical development, driving compliance, productivity, and efficiency”

Commenting on her new role, de la Rocha shared: “I am honoured to lead the Clinical Operations team in Europe and am committed to ensuring that our operations are not only efficient and compliant but also deeply support our mission to improve patient outcomes in our region.”

According to BeiGene, since joining BeiGene in 2022 as the Global Head of Operational Excellence, De la Rocha has “championed impactful changes in clinical development, driving compliance, productivity, and efficiency.”

Pilar de la Rocha’s career journey to date

Pilar de la Rocha as Beigene's Head of Europe, Global Clinical OperationsPilar de la Rocha as Beigene's Head of Europe, Global Clinical Operations

Pilar de la Rocha as Head of Europe, Global Clinical Operations, Beigene.

The company stated that de la Rocha transitioned to the role of Head of Clinical Operations, Europe, in early 2024. Other roles she has served in include leading the execution of clinical trials in all phases in over 20 countries for the Novartis global Clinical Oncology Programs in Switzerland.

Beigene also noted that during her last seven years at Novartis, de la Rocha led the Operational Excellence team in Translational Clinical Oncology, contributing to streamlined processes and high-quality trials. Her work involved “the design of internet-based platforms streamlining activities related to site management, feasibility assessment, and patient enrolment.”

Prior to this, her career also involved translational work at UCLA, then later overseeing the Early Clinical Development Cancer Center at Harvard Medical School.