UC San Diego’s Jill Mesirov. Photo via ucsdnews.ucsd.edu

Two San Diego County residents were appointed Thursday by Gov. Jerry Brown to the newly created Governor’s Advisory Committee on Precision Medicine.

UC San Diego professor of medicine Jill Mesirov of Solana Beach, and Pfizer’s vice president of diagnostics, Hakan Sakul of San Diego, will be among 14 committee members who will advise the governor’s office on emerging precision medicine policy issues, such as data sharing and privacy, use of precision medicine in clinical settings, engagement and education of patients and caregivers, and the economic impact and sustainability of precision medicine-based treatments.

The committee will also provide recommendations on further actions the public and private sectors can take to integrate precision medicine into health care.

“California is a world leader in medicine and technology,” Brown said. “This committee of experts will help us think through how precision medicine can improve health and health care for Californians.”

Mesirov, 67, is also the associate vice chancellor for computational health sciences at UCSD. She has also held leadership positions in computational biology at the Broad Institute of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard, and at IBM.

Sakul, 55, has held several positions at Pfizer since 2002, including executive director and head of diagnostics for worldwide research and development and senior director of translational oncology in the Oncology Business Unit.

He led Pfizer’s companion diagnostics program for Xalkori, a lung cancer drug that received U.S Food and Drug Administration approval in 2011, along with its diagnostics test.

The uncompensated positions do not require Senate confirmation.

— City News Service

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