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14 July 2014

European QP Association announces changes in its IMP Working Group

The European QP Association, the voice of more than 2.300 Qualified Persons (QPs) and professionals in similar functions from across Europe and beyond, has been supporting the idea of providing a platform for Working Groups as part of the Association since its foundation in 2006. That’s why the Working Group on Investigational Medicinal Products (IMPs) has been part of the Association almost from the start, and its pre-conference IMP workshops have been a well-known part since the second annual QP Forum in 2007. Now the QP Association announced some changes in its Working Group’s leadership team.

Martine Tratsaert from Johnson & Johnson in Belgium, who initiated and led the Working Group together with Dr Annemiek Stijnen (Kinesis Pharma, Netherlands), has left the group. The lead was taken over by Dr Susanne Ding from Boehringer Ingelheim Pharma, Germany, who joined the leadership team in 2012 and who has been actively involved in the IMP workshops for a number of years already. As Qualified Person for IMPs at Boehringer Ingelheim Pharma Dr Ding has been in charge of releasing clinic samples for the use in clinical studies worldwide since 2005.

Dr Ding will be supported by Niina Taylor from Pfizer in the UK and from Philippe Van der Hofstadt from B&C Group in Belgium. Niina Taylor joined the IMP Working Group leadership team in 2012 already. She worked in various areas of Microbiology prior to moving into the pharmaceutical industry in 1992 and progressed from the role of a microbiologist to Qualified Person. Joining Pfizer in 1999 she has held various positions within QA and has been performing QP certification of Clinical Supplies since 2004. Philippe Van der Hofstadt started at the B&C Group in 1999. Today, he is CEO of the European niche packaging & logistics company dedicated to clinical research that is now active on a global scale.

There are further two new members in the leadership team: Justin Barry and Geneviève Meeus. Justin Barry is Managing Director at Midatech Biogune, Spain. He brings in more than 30 years of experience in Biotechnology Quality and Quality Assurance – with several years in Senior Management positions, including QA Director at GlaxoWellcome Biotech and General Manager for Genentech Spain. Formerly a microbiologist Justin is a Qualified Person and has acted in that role for both commercial and IMP products. Geneviève Meeus is Director QA Clinical Supply Chain/IMP QP at Johnson & Johnson and leads an IMP QP team with global release responsibilities for all IMPs being used in clinical trials sponsored by J&J. She is an Industrial Pharmacist by education and has many years of experience in different quality positions connected to manufacturing and testing commercial pharmaceutical products, IMPs and medical devices. She has been a Qualified Person for both commercial products and IMPs.

“I’d like to thank Martine Tratsaert and Annemiek Stijnen for setting up the IMP Group. They have been doing great work since the group’s inception in 2007, and it has been successfully addressing a new group of QPs with its IMP workshops”, said Richard M. Bonner, QP Association Advisory Board Chairman. “I’m also happy that Susanne accepted to take the lead in the group and that she is supported by Justin and Geneviève as new members of the leadership team. They bring in a great deal of experience that will certainly help to advance the group and thus the entire Association.”