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Ruth March



Ruth March, PhD, is Senior Vice-President of AstraZeneca’s Precision Medicine and Genomics function, including over 110 diagnostic and genomics experts across the globe. As a member of the senior leadership team in AstraZeneca’s Innovative Medicines & Early Development Biotech Unit, I am accountable for delivering diagnostics across AstraZeneca’s R&D pipeline to match targeted medicines to those patients most likely to benefit. I also lead AstraZeneca/ MedImmune’s Genomics Initiative, which aims to transform drug discovery and development by analysing up to 2 million genomes. I have led the development of AstraZeneca’s industry-leading capability in precision medicine, with 16 diagnostics launched linked to 4 AstraZeneca medicines since 2014. Precision medicine is now applied in >90% of AstraZeneca’s clinical pipeline across all main therapy areas - oncology, CVMD, and respiratory disease. I have also led an innovative approach to diagnostics, developing technologies that best fit the patient’s care pathway. In addition, I have led over $185M investment with diagnostic partners, including molecular diagnostics, tissue diagnostics, next generation sequencing and point of care diagnostics. With my team, I have pioneered many industry firsts: 1st drug label extension based on circulating tumour DNA (ctDNA), making targeted therapy available to up to 40% of patients with lung cancer who cannot provide a solid tumour tissue sample 1st laboratory based companion diagnostic (which detects thousands of mutations in BRCA genes classified through a diagnostic algorithm) 1st companion diagnostic based on both ctDNA and tissue in the resistance setting 1st point of care diagnostic approved in inflammation 1st prototype point of care diagnostic for eosinophilic asthma I am a genomics specialist with over 50 patents and publications and I drew on my extensive academic research to lead the first genome-wide single-nucleotide polymorphism analysis of a safety biomarker to be submitted to the FDA.

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