Patrick Gallagher, with Duane Morris.

The head of Duane Morris‘ pharmaceuticals and biosimilars litigation and regulatory practice is now a South Florida lawyer.

Patrick Gallagher, a partner in Duane Morris’ Boca Raton office and its only pharmaceuticals litigator based there, will lead that practice across the firm. Gallagher, an intellectual property lawyer, is taking over for Vincent Capuano, a partner in the firm’s Boston office.

“Our clients are national and international, so the group covers the whole country, and that’s part of why I’m heading it,” Gallagher said.

He said a core of the practice group he is now leading is located in Boston, thanks to the amount of biotechnology research and number of related startup companies located there. But it’s also an exciting time for pharma in South Florida and across the country, he said.

“It’s a highly regulated industry, and at the same time you can see the need for regulation to make sure, from the FDA’s perspective, that the products they’re approving for the market are safe and effective,” Gallagher said. “There’s a lot of costs with that, and there’s a lot of exciting developments where the science sometimes gets ahead of the regulatory framework.”

Gallagher said lawyers in his practice group regularly work with lawyers in other practices that have clients in the life sciences industry. In fact, he said, the firm has a dedicated life sciences group, in which his team often serves as a resource on the underlying business models and regulatory framework that becomes key in dealmaking and licensing.

In another recent move related to its pharmaceutical work, Duane Morris entered a partnership last week with the American Trade Association of Cannabis and Hemp. The firm’s cannabis practice chair, Seth Goldberg, noted that its work in the burgeoning cannabis industry, which began just a few years ago, has dovetailed well with the existing pharmaceutical and medical device practice and life sciences group.

Duane Morris has nearly 50 lawyers in Florida, with offices in Boca Raton and Miami. It relocated both of those offices earlier this year.

READ MORE:

Duane Morris Opts for Smaller Miami Office in Move to Citigroup Center

Duane Morris Moving Boca Raton Office to Lynn Financial Center

Duane Morris Links With Cannabis Trade Group as Legal Pot Spreads