After transforming Eli Lilly's pipeline, research chief steps down

Eli Lilly announced Friday that Dr. August Watanabe will retire from his posts as executive vice president for science and technology, and president of Lilly Research Laboratories, news sources report.

Watanabe is credited with helping build the company's pipeline of experimental medicines into one of the strongest in the industry. After the loss of its patent on Prozac in 2001 and some lean quarters, "the company now has a host of potentially profitable new medicines either recently approved for sale or awaiting approval," a news source reports. They include drugs for attention deficit disorder, depression, osteoporosis and erectile dysfunction.

Steve Paul, group vice president for Lilly Research Laboratories, will replace Watanabe. He will also join the company's policy committee.

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