Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX) has a new, high-powered chief medical officer (CMO). The company announced Wednesday that it appointed Filip Dubovsky to the position. An industry veteran with more than 20 years of experience, he was most recently deputy CMO for clinical affairs at another global pharmaceutical major, AstraZeneca (NASDAQ:AZN).

Most of Dubovsky's time at AstraZeneca was spent in its MedImmune biologics subsidiary. The MedImmune brand was retired by AstraZeneca last year; at that point, according to his LinkedIn profile page, Dubovsky had worked there for more than 13 years. He served in several executive positions, including vice-president of clinical development for vaccines and infectious disease.

Prior to that, he was scientific director of PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative, where in his words, he "created, managed and defended a portfolio of 25 malaria vaccine candidates spanning from early candidate optimization to Phase 3 clinical study preparation."

A syringe being filled with a vaccine from a vial.

Image source: Getty Images.

That experience promises to be greatly helpful to Novavax; many eyes are on its NVX-CoV2372 vaccine candidate for the still-spreading SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. The company is also preparing to submit a Biologics License Application to the FDA for NanoFlu, an influenza vaccine for people over 65.

Last month, Novavax announced that it had secured up to $388 million in funding from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Initiatives (CEPI) to help it develop its candidate COVID-19 vaccine. More recently, it announced it was selling $200 million of convertible preferred stock in a private placement deal; the funds raised will be used in the development of both vaccines.

On Wednesday, Novavax stock well outperformed the modest gains of the broader market, closing nearly 6.3% higher on the day.

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