Advisory Council

Laura Bessen-Nichtberger


Laura Bessen, MD is an accomplished physician and retired pharmaceutical company executive. She was most recently Head of U.S. Medical at Bristol Myers Squibb, responsible for the entire BMS product portfolio.

Dr. Bessen nurtured the development and launch of 10 novel pharmaceutical products and a broad range of expanded indications across multiple therapeutic areas and geographies, including oncology, virology, immunology and cardiovascular disease. Among the notable achievements were her leadership role and advocacy for the development of ATRIPLA, the first ‘one-pill, once-a-day” for HIV and AIDS, biologics for rheumatoid arthritis and transplant, ORENCIA and NULOJIX and the launch of YERVOY and OPDIVO the first immuno-oncology products launched by BMS.

Dr. Bessen holds an M.D. degree from New York University School of Medicine. She completed her clinical training in Internal medicine at Mount Sinai Medical Center and fellowship in Infectious Diseases at Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

She currently serves on several non-profit and academic boards including JEVS Human Services, the Roy and Diana Vagelos Life Sciences and Management Program at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, Penn Medicine Innovation Research Council and the Castleman Disease Collaborative Network.

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