J&J’s AI head jumps to Recursion; Doug Williams resigns as Sana’s R&D chief

Najat Khan

Recursion Pharmaceuticals has poached Najat Khan from Johnson & Johnson, where she led AI efforts at one of healthcare’s giants.

Khan will serve as chief R&D and commercial officer, along with joining Recursion’s board. The move comes at a critical time for Recursion, as its stock price has fallen 75% since going public in 2021, currently commanding a market capitalization of $1.75 billion. The Utah biotech expects its first Phase 2 readouts later this year for two rare disease drug candidates.

Khan’s hiring comes shortly after the departure of Shafique Virani, Recursion’s former chief business officer. Virani left earlier this year to join Noetik, a biotech startup led by two ex-Recursion scientists.

Khan most recently served as chief data science officer and global head of strategy and portfolio organization for J&J’s Janssen R&D group. Khan earned a PhD in…
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