Gowling WLG welcomes new partner to its Life Sciences team

13 September 2023

International law firm Gowling WLG is delighted to welcome Sharmela Kalmer as a partner to its industry-leading Life Sciences team.

With a primary focus on IP transactions, Sharmela brings with her extensive experience with established and emerging pharmaceutical, biotech and medtech clients, including university spin-outs, research institutions, and charities, on a variety of collaboration, research and development matters.

Sharmela's background includes advising and negotiating intellectual property and commercial agreements, as well as clinical trial-related contracts. She is a member of the West London & GTAC (Gene Therapy Advisory Committee) NHS Research Ethics Committee and is involved in the ethical review of research involving cutting-edge technologies.

This is a return to Gowling WLG for Sharmela, who qualified at Wragge & Co (as Gowling WLG then was) in 2009. Since then, Sharmela has worked in-house at Sanofi, Virgin Care Limited and Takeda Pharmaceuticals before joining Withers in 2018 as a senior associate in the Intellectual Property and Technology team.

Sharmela commented: "I am very pleased to be joining such a renowned team with a leading practice. I look forward to working with my new team to continue strengthening the practice and to support our clients to achieve the best possible outcomes."

Kate Swaine, head of IP (UK LLP) at Gowling WLG, added: "Sharmela brings a wealth of experience from across the life sciences sector and we're excited to have her as a part of the team to enhance our client offering. She will help to shape the practice for the future and complement the excellent work of our life sciences litigators."

Sharmela will be based in the Gowling WLG offices at 4More London. She joins the firm's 43-strong UK Life Sciences team and will work alongside transactional life sciences partners Patrick Duxbury, Dr Luke Kempton and Jenny Davies, and legal director Mathilda Davidson.

Gowling WLG's Life Sciences team was recognised in The Times Best Law Firms 2023, having advised AstraZeneca on its transaction with Scorpion Therapeutics to develop precision medicines against previously hard-to-target cancer proteins, as well as receiving a prestigious 'Band 1' ranking in the Chambers & Partners UK 2023.

Patrick Duxbury was named 'Life Sciences – Transactional Lawyer of the Year' at the prestigious 'Who's Who Legal Awards 2022'. Jenny Davies was recognised as one of IAM Patent 1000's leading patent professionals globally in 2023 for her work advising pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device clients in a range of settings, from high value and complex transactions to multi-billion dollar patent litigation. Transactional IP specialist Mathilda Davidson, whose focus is helping clients exploit their IP assets across a range of different markets and sectors, was listed as one of Managing Intellectual Property's 'Rising Stars' in 2022. Luke Kempton has been ranked for Life Sciences transactional work by Chambers for the last 10 years and advises all sizes and types of life sciences companies on licensing and collaboration deals.

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