"Why do we need to reconstruct drug discovery?" by Prof Chas Bountra & Dr Javier Lezaun

Past Event

27 November 2014, 4:30pm - 6:00pm

Lecture Theatre, Oxford Martin School
34 Broad Street (corner of Holywell and Catte Streets), Oxford, OX1 3BD

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Professor Chas Bountra and Dr Javier Lezaun take a fresh look at the way we organise early-stage (high-risk/high-reward) pharmaceutical research.

The drug discovery process is extremely high risk, takes too long and is becoming unaffordable. The pharmaceutical industry, despite massive investments, has been forced to reduce risk and costs. With ageing societies and the rise of chronic diseases of modern living, we desperately need better therapeutics. Professor Chas Bountra and Dr Javier Lezaun will examine alternatives to the traditional way of doing things, and propose a radical solution - arguably the only way to resolve this dilemma.

Join in on twitter with #c21health

This seminar will be live webcast on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oamayzlviAM

About the speakers

Professor Chas Bountra is Professor of Translational Medicine in the Nuffield Department of Clinical Medicine; Associate Member of the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Oxford and Chief Scientist at the SGC (Structural Genomics Consortium). He is also a Visiting Professor in Neuroscience and Mental Health at Imperial College, London. Chas is an invited expert on several government and charitable research funding bodies, and an advisor for many academic, biotech and pharma drug discovery programmes.

His current research is aimed at determining the 3D X ray structures of novel proteins, generating novel small molecule inhibitors, using these to dissect disease networks and hence identifying new targets for drug discovery.

Chas is an advocate for pre-competitive science, up to and including Phase IIa clinical studies. The SGC publishes all findings immediately (more than one per week), works closely with over 100 academic labs across the world and 8 pharmaceutical companies, and shares all reagents and expertise freely.

Chas has worked in the pharmaceutical industry, and has experience of all stages of discovery and development. He was involved in the launch of Alosetron for the treatment of IBS, has progressed more than 30 clinical candidates, many of these into Phase II studies and 5 into Phase III studies. His therapeutic expertise is in neuro-psychiatric, gastro-intestinal (GI) and inflammatory diseases.

Dr Javier Lezaun is James Martin Lecturer in Science and Technology Governance, and Deputy Director of the Institute for Science, Innovation and Society, Oxford Martin School. Javier received a PhD in Science and Technology Studies from Cornell University, and before coming to Oxford faculty he held positions at the London School of Economics and Amherst College. Javier is a Fellow at Kellogg College.

Javier directs the BioProperty research programme, an initiative funded by the European Research Council to examine the role of property rights in biomedical research and explore the value of open innovation models in pharmaceutical R&D. He is currently investigating the organisation and governance of pre-competitive R&D against neglected tropical diseases, and the role of IP regimes in the evolution of stem cell biology, synthetic biology, and the development of transgenic organisms.