Kristen M. Hege, M.D.
Senior Vice President, Early Clinical Development, Oncology/Hematology and Cell Therapy
San Francisco, CA
Kristen Hege is a physician who has been board-certified in hematology, medical oncology and internal medicine. Following the acquisition of Celgene in 2019, Kristen joined Bristol Myers Squibb as the senior vice president of Early Clinical Development, Hematology/Oncology & Cell Therapy.
Based out of Bristol Myers Squibb’s San Francisco site, Kristen focuses on developing innovative cancer treatments to combat hard-to-treat diseases. A self-described “jack-of-all-trades,” she is responsible for overseeing early clinical development programs for a diverse range of treatment modalities such as CAR T cells, T-cell engagers, monoclonal antibodies and small molecules. She and her team of physicians and clinical scientists use translational insights to shape clinical trials, guide biomarker strategies and inform asset development. In addition to her work at Bristol Myers Squibb, Kristen continues to work part-time as a clinical professor of medicine at the University of California-San Francisco (UCSF) where she sees patients with blood cancers weekly.
Kristen has spent much of her career working to improve the lives of others through cell therapy research and development, an area that has revolutionized the way we approach treating blood cancers. Her initial work in the field included helping launch the first CAR T cell trial for solid tumors in 1996. In 2010, Kristen joined Celgene, where she built a translational medicine program and oversaw the development of bb2121 (ide-cel), an investigational CAR T cell therapy for patients with advanced multiple myeloma, in collaboration with bluebird bio.
Interests and Expertise
Kristen dedicates her time to helping others outside of work as well. She serves as a co-organizer of the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer’s annual Women in Cancer Immunotherapy Network (WIN), where she works to promote career development for women in science and medicine. In 2015, Kristen was recognized by FierceBiotech as one of the Top 12 Women in Biopharma and in 2019 she was the first Celgene recipient of the Healthcare Business Women’s Association Luminary award. Her career path and long history with CAR T cell development was recently featured in Nature Medicine’s “Turning Points” series, recognizing 25 physicians and scientists as part of its 25th anniversary celebration. In spring of 2020, Kristen was recognized by the San Francisco Business Times as one of its “Most Influential Women in Business.”
Kristen received her M.D. from UCSF, and internal medicine and hematology/oncology subspecialty training at the Harvard-affiliated Brigham & Women’s Hospital and UCSF, respectively.