EFMC PHOTO COMPETITION IS OPEN – DEADLINE IS AUGUST 10, 2021
To support the EFMC efforts in showcasing the continuum between Medicinal Chemistry and Chemical Biology, we need your contribution to share the best picture representing your vision of "Bridging MedChem and ChemBio".
Do you feel up to the challenge!?
We want scientists from any level and affiliation to take the best shot possible and enter the competition!
The submitted pictures will be judged by a first round of online voting and the 20 best shots will be showcased at the EFMC-ISMC 2021 for attendees to vote live!
Submit your best picture and win up to €200 in the EFMC’s photo competition!
Deadline to submit your picture is August 10, 2021.
Visit www.efmc.info/photo-competition for more information.
EFMC-YSN WELCOMES NEW BOARD MEMBERS
It is with pleasure that the Young Scientists of the EFMC is taking in three new members inside its board, ensuring a continuous flow of fresh ideas and energy to boost their activities.
Laia Josa Culleré (IQAC-CSIC, Spain), Marta Piquero (University of Basel, Switzerland) and Etienne Donckele (Monte Rosa Therapeutics, Switzerland) have been accepted onto the EFMC-YSN, joining the current members:
- Kristina Goncharenko, Spirochem, Switzerland (Chair)
- Nadia Ahmad, Charles River, United Kingdom
- Piia Bartos, University of Eastern Finland, Finland
- Chiara Borsari, University of Basel, Switzerland
- Caroline Lanthier, University of Antwerp, Belgium
- Michele Mari, University of Urbino Carlo Bo, Italy
- Brieuc Matagne, EFMC & LD Organisation, Belgium
- Matic Proj, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia
- Filipa Ramilo Gomes, F. Hoffmann-La Roche, Switzerland
- Luc Van Hijfte, Symeres & EFMC, The Netherlands
- Clemens Zwergel, Sapienza University of Rome, Italy
MEET NIALL ANDERSON, GLAXOSMITHKLINE, UNITED KINGDOM
In this edition, our #Iamamedicinalchemist is the winner of the 2021 EFMC Prize for Young Medicinal Chemist or Chemical Biologist in Industry: Niall Anderson from GSK, United Kingdom.
Get to know him better by reading our interview below.
Where and when did you obtain your PhD diploma?
I obtained my PhD in a collaborative programme between GlaxoSmithKline and the University of Strathclyde in 2014. I was very fortunate to work with an academic (Professor Colin Suckling) and industrial supervisor (Mr John Pritchard) who both had many years of drug discovery experience and were very supportive and motivational.
What was the topic of your PhD project?
My PhD was focussed on the development of integrin antagonists as potential treatment options for people with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF). I was able to publish some of my work and see one of the molecules identified during my PhD progress into the clinic and be ultimately be given to patients with IPF.
Where are you currently working and what is your current position?
I still work in GlaxoSmithKline, I am a Scientific Leader and GSK Associate Fellow within the Medicinal Chemistry organisation based in Stevenage, UK. My current role is to lead the GSK medicinal chemistry side of a joint research collaboration with Kymera Therapeutics to discover new E3 ligase binders that can be incorporated into PROTAC molecules.
What are your current research interests?
I am really interested in the field of Targeted Protein Degradation. This is a relatively new and rapidly expanding area and it is exciting to see the progress of various PROTACs into the clinic. I am excited to see what the future will be for these large molecules.
What do you like best about your work?
I love the fact that every day when I come into work, I face a new challenge. This could be a practical chemistry hurdle or something that is related to the programme I am working on and can only be solved by involving the wider matrix team including biologists and DMPK scientists. This helps to keep me on my toes and maintain my motivation to see programmes progress towards decision points.
What do you consider your greatest achievement in your scientific career?
The identification of GSK3008348, a potent and selective αvβ6 integrin antagonist that reached Phase 2 clinical trials. I worked on this programme for several years and experienced the progression through the entire drug discovery process from hit to lead through to candidate selection and ultimately the clinic. This evolution involved a number of different parts of the organisation, however, to be the chemist that designed and first synthesised GSK’348 is something that I am particularly proud of. Learnings from this programme were used to subsequently progress an oral programme to candidate selection as well.
Which of your papers are you most proud of and why?
In 2019 I published a paper entitled Targeting IRAK4 for Degradation with PROTACs. This was a programme that I lead with a small team of chemists and biologists from concept to decision point in less than 9 months . The work was then published within a year after the first degrader was identified. The field of Targeted Protein Degradation is a hot topic at the moment and this paper has gained many citations and has allowed me to present the story at various fora. Decisions we make are often fraught with uncertainty and the risk of being incorrect. So it is important to celebrate good decisions rather than lucky ones and I think this is one of many examples that demonstrates the smart risk-taking culture we have at GSK. ACS Med. Chem. Lett. 2019, 10, 7, 1081–1085.
How would you describe yourself as a supervisor?
I would like to think I am motivational and someone that seeks opportunities for supervisees to grow and develop themselves. I like to pass on the experiences I have had, both good and bad, and hopefully help to guide the careers of fellow medicinal chemists.
NEWS FROM THE SECTION OF PHARMACEUTICAL/MEDICINAL CHEMISTRY OF THE GERMAN PHARMACEUTICAL SOCIETY (DPhG)
Arch. Pharm. 3.0
The scientific journal of the German Pharmaceutical Society and thus also of its section Medicinal/Pharmaceutical Chemistry, the good old Arch. Pharm., will celebrate its 200th anniversary in January 2022. The entry into the third century of scientific publishing alone would maybe justify the label "Arch. Pharm. 3.0", however, the journal impact factor has been below 3.0 in the past. This has changed; the JIF 2020 has now improved considerably and is listed as 3.751!
The journal is now ranking in quartile 2, above average in all three categories "chemistry, medicinal", "chemistry, multidisciplinary", and "pharmacology & pharmacy".
A higher percentage of contributions from Europe would be very welcome to help us to maintain the now attractive impact factor and to further improve the quality of our submissions. We invite especially members of the EFMC to disseminate their research on chemistry in life sciences via Arch. Pharm. in our third century. The editorial board would be grateful if European researchers could, not only be active as authors, but also as readers and reviewers in the bright future of chemistry in life sciences in Europe.
The editorial board: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/15214184
NEWS FROM THE DIVISION OF MEDICINAL CHEMISTRY OF THE GERMAN CHEMICAL SOCIETY (GDCH)
This year, the German Chemical Society (GDCh) has awarded Max Planck Director Peter H. Seeberger the Emil Fischer Medal, worth 7,500 euros. He receives the award for his pioneering contributions to the synthesis of complex carbohydrates, in particular through the development of automated methods.
As an outstanding basic researcher in organic chemistry, Peter Seeberger is one of the pioneers of flow chemistry and is distinguished by his outstanding work in the field of carbohydrate chemistry. The core interest of his research focuses on the production of complex sugars. With his syntheses, Seeberger founded the field of "molecular glycobiology," from which novel sugar-based vaccine candidates have emerged in addition to cholesterol-lowering agents and diagnostics for bacterial and parasitic infections.
The EFMC would like to join the GDCh in congratulating Peter Seeberger, who received the UCB-Ehrlich Award for Excellence in Medicinal Chemistry in 2008.
NEWS FROM THE BIOLOGICAL AND MEDICINAL CHEMISTRY SECTOR (BMCS) OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY OF CHEMISTRY (RSC)
The BMCS announces some upcoming events:
- 21st RSC/SCI Medicinal Chemistry Symposium (Poster deadline is July 23)
- 4th Artificial Intelligence in Chemistry (Poster deadline is August 13)
- 3rd RSC/SCI Symposium on Antimicrobial Drug Discovery
VIRTUAL - 21st RSC / SCI Medicinal Chemistry Symposium
12th to 15th September 2021, Churchill College, Cambridge, UK
The call for poster abstracts will close on 23rd July
Synopsis: One of Europe’s premier biennial Medicinal Chemistry events, focusing on first disclosures and new strategies in medicinal chemistry
VIRTUAL - 4th Artificial Intelligence in Chemistry - NEW!
27th and 28th September 2021
The call for poster abstracts will close on 13th August (poster)
Synopsis: Artificial Intelligence is presently experiencing a renaissance in the development of new methods and practical applications to ongoing challenges in Chemistry. The meeting will combine aspects of artificial intelligence and deep machine learning methods to applications in chemistry
VIRTUAL - 3rd RSC / SCI Symposium on Antimicrobial Drug Discovery
15th and 16th November 2021
Synopsis: Coinciding with WHO’s World Antibiotics Awareness week, this two-day meeting will examine the latest advances in antimicrobial drug discovery from a medicinal chemist’s perspective, focusing on the particular challenges associated with developing antimicrobials whilst also showcasing emerging strategies for tackling infection.
THIS NEWSLETTER IS KINDLY SPONSORED BY
ISSUE SPONSORED BY
Schrödinger is a leading provider of advanced molecular simulations and enterprise software solutions that accelerate and increase the efficiency of drug discovery and materials design. Founded in 1990, Schrödinger has nearly 400 employees and operations across the world.
EFMC ORGANISED EVENTS
August 29-September 2, 2021
EFMC-ISMC 2021 - XXVI EFMC International Symposium on Medicinal Chemistry
September 9-10, 2021
EFMC-YMCS 2021 - 8th EFMC Young Medicinal Chemists’ Symposium
May 8-11, 2022
Oegstgeest, The Netherlands
16th EFMC Short Course on Medicinal Chemistry New Opportunities in GPCR Drug Discovery
EFMC SPONSORED EVENTS
September 12-15, 2021
21st RSC / SCI Medicinal Chemistry Symposium
October 5-8, 2021
5th Russian Conference on Medicinal Chemistry
October 20-22, 2021
XIII Workshop of SEQT: Therapies with light and New Advanced Therapies
EFMC SPONSORED SCHOOLS
September 13 – 17, 2021
EUROPIN Summer School on Drug Design
September 22-24, 2021
Summer School in Pharmaceutical Analysis (SSPA2021)
Tenure Track Scientist, Catalan Institute of Oncology, Medicinal Chemistry / Chemical Biology, Barcelona, Spain
Principal Scientist - Radiochemist (80-100%), Novartis, Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research - Global Discovery Chemistry, Basel, Switzerland
Senior Research Scientist, Edelris, Medicinal Chemistry, Lyon, France
Post-doc and PhD Positions in Chemical Biology and Drug Discovery, EPFL, Institute of Chemical Sciences and Engineering, Lausanne, Switzerland
Chemical Biologist, Almirall, Research & Development, Barcelona, Spain
PhD position in Radiochemistry, University of Antwerp, Molecular Imaging Center, Antwerp, Belgium
Drug Hunter @Aqemia, AQEMIA, Paris, France