finance

World-leading expert joins Scots firm's cancer drug team



Lanarkshire based Amphista Therapeutics has appointed world-renowned chemist Dr Ian Churcher as its chief scientific officer to boost its cancer drug research.

Churcher is an authority on targeted protein degradation, which the University of Dundee spin-out is harnessing to develop groundbreaking treatments.

For five years he led the led the Protein Degradation Discovery Performance Unit at Glaxo SmithKline (GSK) and has worked on R&D for Merck and BenevolentAI.

Churcher’s appointment comes after Amphista raised around £6 million of in an investment round in April.

CEO Dr Nicola Thompson said: “I’m delighted to welcome Ian to the team. As an internationally recognised leader in the field of targeted protein degradation (TPD) as a therapeutic modality, Ian’s scientific leadership will be a tremendous addition to the Amphista team as we progress our TPD pipeline to the clinic.

“Ian’s appointment so soon after last month’s $7.5m Series A financing signals Amphista’s determination to deliver on its vision to create a world-leading protein degradation company delivering ground-breaking new medicines in areas of high patient need.”

Amphista was founded to commercialise the work of Alessio Ciulli, the University of Dundee’s professor of chemical and structural biology. It is now based at BioCity Scotland in Newmains. It uses TPD molecules to harness the body’s natural defences by prompting it destroy proteins that accelerate disease.

Between 2012-2017, Churcher worked with Ciulli and Professor Craig Crews at GSK. Churcher has recently led research to help biotech companies change the way drug R&D is carried out using AI and machine learning. He is a former visiting professor in chemistry at the University of Oxford.

READ  Stocks making the biggest moves midday: Tesla, Fastenal, Bed Bath & Beyond & more

Churcher said: “I’ve long sought out novel approaches to address traditionally undruggable targets in areas of high patient need. Amphista has a unique approach to targeted protein degradation and Nicola has quickly built a high-quality team.

“I’m excited by the opportunity to help Amphista develop its novel platform further and rapidly advance its lead projects into the clinic. As Amphista’s approach is very different to existing targeted degradation approaches, it offers significant potential to address a wide range of targets to ultimately help patients across many hard to treat diseases.”



READ SOURCE

Leave a Reply