I am the Global Head of Oncology, Medical in AstraZeneca’s Oncology Business Unit, helping to drive our vision to redefine cancer care.  We advance the practice of cancer care through robust evidence generation, scientific partnerships and helping to reimagine the future cancer care paradigm.  Our science-focused approach along with evidence builds the confidence in the decision making process for clinicians and patients.

Prior to my current role, I led AstraZeneca’s global research and development in breast cancer. As part of that work, I led the development and execution of our breast cancer strategy, establishing the tumour council model, and designed and established our industry leading clinical development program in Breast Cancer.

I joined AstraZeneca after nearly 15 years as a Medical Oncologist, focusing on breast and lung cancer. I achieved international recognition for my research and educational leadership, which included being principal investigator for many pivotal trials in breast cancer including several practice-changing Phase III trials. My work has been published in more than 125 peer-reviewed manuscripts including in the New England Journal of Medicine, The Lancet, Journal of Clinical Oncology and Cancer. I have also led and created numerous innovative educational projects in oncology and won several teaching and mentoring awards.

In addition to the impact on clinical research and clinical care, I am proud of my role as a mentor to clinicians and cancer research pioneers. Over my career, I have mentored more than 100 residents, fellows and faculty and it truly is a great honour to see many of them develop to become leaders in Cancer centres around the globe.

I have chaired, co-chaired or been a member of many regional and national health services cancer leadership committees in Canada and international cancer conference leadership committees, with a focus on driving improved patient outcomes across the world.

After receiving a medical degree and postgraduate training in internal medicine and medical oncology at the University of Alberta in Canada, I earned a Masters in Medical Education at the University of Southern California. My training in breast cancer included a fellowship at the University of Toronto.

Throughout my career I have been driven to make changes that bring real benefits for people with cancer. We are at an unprecedented time where the cancer care landscape is on the verge of being completely transformed, and I believe the team here at AstraZeneca will have a critical role in shaping our vision and working with the oncology community to make it a reality. Our best-in-class research programs covering areas such as antibody drug conjugates, DNA damage response, immuno-oncology, tumor drivers and resistance, as well as our digital expertise and collaborative approach put us in a unique place to make our ambition a reality.

Sunil Verma Senior Vice President, Global Head of Oncology, Medical, AstraZeneca

Top 25 Young Breast Oncologists in the World (2006)

Future Forum Award recognizing young oncologists who will be future leaders in breast cancer

Outstanding Teaching Award (2005, 2007, 2011)

Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Division of Medical Oncology

Distinguished Alumni Award

University of Alberta


Senior Vice President, Global Head of Oncology, Medical at AstraZeneca


Served as Head of Breast Cancer Research Strategy and Global Clinical Head for Breast Cancer at AstraZeneca, responsible for leading the company’s research and development in breast cancer


Led the growth of the department and launched the build of the New Calgary Cancer Centre, one of the largest comprehensive cancer care facilities in North America during term as Professor and Head of the Department of Oncology at the University of Calgary and Medical Director of the Tom Baker Cancer Centre


Served on the faculty at the University of Toronto, most recently as Associate Professor, Department of Medicine

Overall Survival with Palbociclib and Fulvestrant in Advanced Breast Cancer

Turner NC, Slamon DJ, Ro J, Bondarenko I, Im SA, Masuda N, Colleoni M, DeMichele A, Loi S, Verma S, Iwata H. N Engl J Med. 2018 Nov 15;379(20):1926-36.


Palbociclib plus endocrine therapy in older women with HR+/HER2–advanced breast cancer: a pooled analysis of randomised PALOMA clinical studies

Rugo HS, Turner NC, Finn RS, Joy AA, Verma S, Harbeck N, Masuda N, Im SA, Huang X, Kim S, Sun W. Iyer S, Schnell P, Bartlett CH, Johnston S. Eur J Cancer. 2018 Sep 1;101:123-33.


Health-related quality of life of postmenopausal women with hormone receptor positive, human epidermal growth factor receptor 2-negative advanced breast cancer treated with ribociclib + letrozole: results from MONALEESA-2

Verma S, O’Shaughnessy J, Burris HA, Campone M, Alba E, Chandiwana D, Dalal AA, Sutradhar S, Monaco M, Janni W. Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2018 Aug1;170(3):535-45.


Trastuzumab emtansine versus capecitabine plus lapatinib in patients with previously treated HER2-positive advanced breast cancer (EMILIA): a descriptive analysis of final overall survival results from a randomised, open-label, phase 3 trial

Diéras V, Miles D, Verma S, Pegram M, Welslau M, Baselga J, Krop IE, Blackwell K, Hoersch S, Xu J, Green M, Gianni L. Lancet Oncol. 2017 Jun;18(6):732–742.


Palbociclib in Combination With Fulvestrant in Women With Hormone Receptor-Positive/HER2-Negative Advanced Metastatic Breast Cancer: Detailed Safety Analysis From a Multicenter, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled, Phase III Study (PALOMA-3)

Verma S, Bartlett CH, Schnell P, Demichele AM, Loi S, Ro J, Colleoni M, Iwata  H, Harbeck N, Cristofanilli M, Zhang K, Thielse A, Turner NC, Rugo HS. Oncologist. 2016 Oct;21(10):1165-75.


Trastuzumab Emtansine for HER2-Positive Advanced Breast Cancer

Verma S, Miles D, Gianni L, Krop IE, Welslau M, Baselga J, Pegram M, Oh DY, Diéras V, Guardino E, Fang L, Lu MW, Olsen S, Blackwell K, EMILIA Study Group, N Engl J Med. 2012 Nov 8;367(19):1783-91.


Emerging trends in the treatment of triple-negative breast cancer in Canada: a survey

Verma S, Provencher L, Dent R, Curr Oncol. 2011 Aug 03;18(4):180-90.



Patient adherence to aromatase inhibitor treatment in the adjuvant setting

Verma S, Madarnas Y, Sehdev S, Martin G, Bajcar J. Curr Oncol. 2011 May;18 Suppl 1:S3-9.


Is cardiotoxicity being adequately assessed in current trials of cytotoxic and targeted agents in breast cancer?

Verma S, Ewer MS. Ann Oncol. 2011 May;22(5):1011-8.


Veeva ID: Z4-37225
Date of preparation: November 2021