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GSK appoints new head of China business

LONDON (AP) -- GlaxoSmithKline has named a new chief for its operations in China amid an investigation there for possible bribery of doctors, the drug manufacturer said Thursday.

Chinese police say that four employees of GSK China are suspected of paying bribes to doctors and hospitals to encourage them to prescribe medications.

The U.K.-based company has distanced itself from the scandal, saying that the four members of staff were acting outside of company controls.

On Thursday, GSK said it has appointed Herve Gisserot as general manager for GSK China pharmaceuticals, succeeding Mark Reilly.

The move will allow Reilly to dedicate himself to helping direct the company's response to the bribery investigation, GSK said.

Gisserot most recently served as a senior vice-president for GSK's European business, based in London.

GSK said he will transition into his new role over the next few weeks.