Title: Chairman, Chief Executive Officer
Company: IRISYS, LLC
Location: San Diego, California, United States
Gerald Joseph Yakatan, PhD, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Executives for dedication, achievements, and leadership in the pharmaceutical field.
An award-winning pharmaceutical executive with decades of experience in pharmaceutical development, clinical trial strategy and design, and regulatory affairs, Dr. Yakatan demonstrates hard work and empathy for others in his role as the founder and chairman of IRISYS, LLC, an R&D, manufacturing, regulatory and strategic partner for innovative biopharma companies as they move compounds from early research through the clinical trials required for regulatory approvals. In this role since 1998, he possesses a unique skillset that blends executive-level business acumen with an industry leading expertise in pharmaceuticals. Prior to establishing this company, he founded Avanir Pharmaceuticals in San Diego, CA, where he led his team in the research and development of cutting-edge treatments and therapies for disorders of the central nervous system. Notably, he was responsible for the development, regulatory approval and commercialization of Abreva. He also led development efforts resulting in the drug application submission for Nuedexta. Considered a leader in his field, Dr. Yakatan has also served as Pharmaceutics Chair at the University of Texas at Austin, vice president for product development worldwide at Warner-Lambert, and founder and chief executive officer at Tanabe Research Labs, USA. Dr. Yakatan has a long-standing commitment to community service and has been a member of the boards of directors for numerous nonprofit organizations. He was also the executive vice president of research and development for Immunetech Pharmaceuticals.
Dr. Yakatan became interested in pharmacology when he was a teenager working the soda fountain at a pharmacy. The pharmacy later promoted him and allowed him to work with prescriptions. Because of this job and his interest in chemistry, Dr. Yakatan chose to pursue a career in pharmacology and prepared for his career through his education. He earned a Bachelor of Science in pharmacy from Temple University in 1963, followed by a Master of Science in pharmaceutical chemistry from the same university in 1965. From there, he achieved a PhD in pharmaceutical sciences from the University of Florida in 1971. Quickly establishing a reputation of excellence in the areas of pharmaceutical research and development as well as regulatory affairs, Dr. Yakatan supported his career endeavors through his involvement with various industry organizations. He is a member of the National Science Foundation, the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists and the Academy of Pharmaceutical Scientists. In addition, he is a fellow and honorary regent of the American College of Clinical Pharmacology.
In recognition of his professional excellence over the last 55 years, Dr. Yakatan has been the recipient of many awards and commendations. He was named Director of the Year by the Corporate Directors Forum, Distinguished Alumnus by Temple University and Distinguished Alumnus by the University of Florida College of Pharmacology. He was asked to be an AMGEN Honorary Lecturer for the 9th Annual CSU Biotechnology Symposium in 1997 and he was selected for a fellowship program with the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Yakatan was also the recipient of an ACCP Distinguished Service Award and a Distinguished Service award from the American College of Clinical Pharmacy. As he looks toward the future, Dr. Yakatan hopes to build a larger pharmaceutical research and development organization.
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