Research Professor of Medicinal Chemistry and Associate Program Director of the Institute for Therapeutics Discovery and Development, University of Minnesota

I have over 15 years of experience leading in vitro pharmacology groups in drug discovery research. I led assay development, high throughput screening, structure-activity relationship, molecular pharmacology, and phenotypic screening teams at two neuroscience-focused biopharmaceutical companies, CoCensys and Elan Pharmaceuticals. At Elan, my HTS team identified eight Hit series entering medicinal chemistry lead optimization, including three series leading to Development Candidates for Alzheimer’s disease and pain. I have extensive knowledge of several therapeutic areas, particularly pain, neurodegeneration, neuropsychiatric disorders, and autoimmune disease. In the field of pain, I led a multidisciplinary discovery team that identified the bradykinin B1 receptor antagonist Development Candidate ELN441958. In addition, I co-invented the anti-nerve growth factor (NGF) therapeutic monoclonal antibody Development Candidate MEDI-585, which entered Phase 1 clinical trials sponsored by AstraZeneca. I also made seminal contributions to the discovery of the g-secretase development candidate ELN475516 for Alzheimer’s Disease, as well as four GABAA receptor modulator development candidates for anxiety, insomnia, and epilepsy. At Elan, I led drug discovery collaborations with Cambridge Antibody Technology and Ingenium Pharmaceuticals. As a drug discovery consultant, I have advised disease-focused non-profits, research institutes, and biopharmaceutical companies on HTS, pharmacology and research strategy.


  • –present
    Associate Program Director of the Institute for Therapeutics Discovery and Development and Research Professor of Medicinal Chemistry, University of Minnesota