Actelion Pioneers Honored by PHA for Achievements in Treating Pulmonary Hypertension and PAH

Patrícia Silva, PhD avatar

by Patrícia Silva, PhD |

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At the upcoming Evening of Hope Gala, the California chapter of the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) will recognize two pioneers in the field of pulmonary hypertension (PH): Jean-Paul Clozel, MD, a cardiologist who is the chief executive officer the of the biopharmaceutical company Actelion, and his wife Martine Clozel, MD, a pediatrician who serves as the company’s chief scientific officer. The two will receive the California Chapter Legacy Award at the Sept. 22 ceremony.

Actelion, which specializes in treatments for PH and pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), a rare form of PH, was established in 1997 by the couple, working with colleagues and friends. Jean-Paul Clozel is also on Actelion’s board, and Martine Clozel also serves as the company’s senior vice president, head of drug discovery pharmacology and preclinical development.

Jean-Paul Clozel

Jean-Paul Clozel

The Hope Gala’s 25th anniversary event will take place at the Fort Mason Center, Gallery 308, in San Francisco, California, and include a cocktail reception, dinner, a silent auction and dancing. Money raised will help to support PH research. More information, including how to purchase tickets, is available here.

During his 25-year career in cardiology, Jean-Paul Clozel worked at Hoffmann-La Roche, where he was responsible for the selection of the first T-channel blocker, and participated in the characterization of renin inhibitors, as well as several endothelin receptor antagonists like Tracleer (bosentan) and clazosentan.

He published a large number of peer-reviewed papers in medical and scientific journals, while keeping involved as closely as possible with bringing innovative medicines to patients. In 2007, he was named a professor at the Collège de France, in Paris, assuming the chair of technical innovation.

Martine Clozel also worked at Hoffmann-La Roche, where she initiated research into endothelin and endothelin receptor antagonists that led to the discovery

Martine Clozel

Martine Clozel

and clinical development of Tracleer, tezosentan, clazosentan, and other molecules.

She was awarded the Hoffmann-La Roche Research Prize for her achievements in 1997, and has published more than 140 peer-reviewed papers in the fields of endothelial function and endothelin receptor antagonists.

Clozel was also honored by the French government in 2008, receiving “Chevalier dans l’Ordre de la Légion d’Honneur,” and in 2015 she received the Tomoh Masaki award for her contribution to endothelin science and for discovering several endothelin receptor antagonists, particularly Tracleer and Opsumit (macitentan), both established PAH treatments.

“The contributions Drs. Clozel have made to the PH community are vast. Their inspired work has changed the course of this rare disease for people around the world,” Brad A. Wong, president and chief executive officer of PHA, said in a press release.