Eliav Barr

Eliav Barr, M.D.

Senior vice president, head of global clinical development and chief medical officer

"Addressing high unmet medical needs around the world is central to Merck’s purpose and our ability to sustain long-term growth. This includes not only our investments in developing new, innovative products but also ensuring our products reach those who need them."

Years at Merck Research Laboratories


Eliav Barr is senior vice president, head of global clinical development and chief medical officer at Merck Research Laboratories (MRL). He leads all late-stage clinical development for Merck’s Human Health portfolio and pipeline. 

Prior to his current role, Barr led MRL’s global medical and scientific affairs organization expanding Merck’s scientific engagement and implementation efforts in oncology, vaccines and infectious diseases.

Since joining Merck in 1995, Barr has held positions of increasing responsibility including leadership roles in oncology and infectious diseases clinical development. Previously, he served as the therapeutic area head for infectious diseases and managed product development teams across oncology and infectious diseases. Prior to joining Merck, he held a faculty position at the University of Chicago.

Barr is a cardiologist by training. He received his undergraduate degree from the Pennsylvania State University and his medical degree from Thomas Jefferson University. He completed his internal medicine residency and cardiology fellowship at Johns Hopkins University and subsequently pursued post-doctoral training at the University of Michigan.

In 2019, he was a proud recipient of a Penn State Alumni Fellow award for his dedication to the development of medicines and vaccines that treat and prevent infectious diseases. Recognized as a leader giving voice and visibility to the LGBTQ+ community in science, Barr was named to Endpoints News’ 2023 LGBTQ+ biopharma leaders list. He also currently serves as the executive sponsor of Merck’s 3,400-member Rainbow Alliance employee business resource group.