Dr. Ruffolo is the retired President of Research and Development for Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, and Corporate Senior Vice President of Wyeth (now Pfizer). In that role, he managed an R&D organization of 9,000 scientists with an annual budget in excess of $4 billion. Prior to Wyeth, Dr. Ruffolo spent 17 years at SmithKline Beecham Pharmaceuticals (now GlaxoSmithKline) where he was Senior Vice President and Director of Drug Discovery Research Worldwide, and 6 years at Lilly Research Laboratories where he was Chairman of the Cardiovascular Research Committee.
During his career in the Pharmaceutical Industry, Dr. Ruffolo played a significant role in the discovery and/or development of a number of marketed products, including carvedilol (Coreg/Kredex/Dilatrend) for the treatment of congestive heart failure, ropinirole (Requip) for Parkinson's Disease, dobutamine (Dobutrex) for the management of acute congestive heart failure and eprosartan (Teveten) for hypertension. For his pioneering work on carvedilol for the treatment of congestive heart failure, Dr. Ruffolo received the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America’s (PhRMA) most prestigious award, the Discoverer’s Award. Carvedilol has saved the lives of tens of millions of people around the world, and has become the standard of care for congestive heart failure.
Dr. Ruffolo received his B.S. degree in Pharmacy summa cum laude with Distinction in 1973, and his Ph.D. degree in Pharmacology in 1976, both from Ohio State University. Thereafter, he spent two years as a postdoctoral fellow at the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Ruffolo has authored nearly 500 full-length publications and over 200 abstracts, and has edited 15 books. He was the Editor-in-Chief of four international pharmacology journals, and was an Editor of two other international journals. He has served on the editorial boards of 29 international scientific journals. Dr. Ruffolo has been Adjunct Professor of Pharmacology at Baylor University, McGill University, Ohio State University and West Virginia University.
Dr. Ruffolo has received a number of prestigious awards, including two Honorary Doctorate degrees (University of Catania, Italy, and West Virginia University) and two Lifetime Achievement Awards (Ohio State University and Scrip Awards). He was named Global Scientific Officer of the Year in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. The American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics (ASPET) established the Robert R. Ruffolo Career Achievement in Pharmacology Award (Medal) to honor the contributions made by Dr. Ruffolo to drug discovery and development. The American Society for Information Science & Technology has designated Dr. Ruffolo as a Highly Cited Scientist for being among the top 100 most cited Pharmacologists in the world for over three decades.