The Worst Biotech CEO of 2013 is Vijay Samant of Vical (VICL).
Samant wins this year's (dis)honor for putting melanoma patients in harm's way by delaying the analysis of Vical's allovectin phase III study. When Samant finally got around to announcing the study results -- years later than expected -- melanoma patients treated with allovectin fared worse than patients treated with conventional chemotherapy.
It takes a special kind of moral bankruptcy to cause more pain and suffering to already critically sick melanoma patients, but that's kind of biotech CEO Samant is, so the award is well deserved.
Someone out there is particularly angry at Samant because he won with an astonishing 71% of the 14,140 votes cast.
The runner-up this year was Ariad Pharma's (ARIA) Harvey Berger with 14% of the votes cast. Aveo Pharma's (AVEO) Tuan Ha Ngoc, John Johnson of Dendreon (DNDN) and Amarin's (AMRN) Joe Zakrzewaski placed third, fourth and fifth, respectively.
A special shout-out of Zakrzewski for announcing his "retirement" from Amarin on Monday.
This year's Best Biotech CEO was Celgene's (CELG) Bob Hugin.
-- Reported by Adam Feuerstein in Boston.
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