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Dame Margaret Brimble, FRS

Dame Margaret Brimble FRS is the Director of Medicinal Chemistry and a Distinguished Professor at the University of Auckland where her research program focuses on the synthesis of bioactive natural products, antimicrobial peptides, cancer vaccines, glycopeptides, self-assembling peptides and peptidomimetics. She has published >485 papers, 70 reviews and is an inventor on >50 patents. In 2018 she was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society London, awarded the Royal Society of Chemistry George and Christine Sosnovsky Award in Cancer Therapy and conferred the Queens Honour Dame Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit (DNZM). She won the 2016 Marsden Medal, the 2012 RSNZ Rutherford (NZ’s top science prize), MacDiarmid and Hector Medals, the 2011 Royal Australian Chemical Institute Adrien Albert Award, the 2010 RSC Natural Products Award, the 2007 L’Oreal-UNESCO Women in Science laureate in Materials Science for Asia-Pacific, a 2015 IUPAC Distinguished Women in Chemistry/Chemical Engineering Award. She is an Associate Editor for Organic Letters, Past-Associate Editor for Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry, Past-President of IUPAC Organic and Biomolecular Division III, Past-President of the International Society of Heterocyclic Chemistry and Past-Chair of the Rutherford Foundation RSNZ.  She discovered the first drug NNZ2566 named “trofinetide” to treat Rett Syndrome and Fragile X Syndrome that is in phase III clinical trials with Neuren Pharmaceuticals (http://www.neurenpharma.com) and Acadia Pharmaceuticals. A second unique neurotrophic drug candidate NNZ-2591 also discovered by Professor Brimble’s lab has recently been demonstrated to give positive results in pre-clinical models of three additional neurodevelopmental disorders – Angelman syndrome, Pitt Hopkins syndrome and Phelan-McDermid syndrome. Neuren is filing an Investigational New Drug Application (IND) for NNZ2591 with the US Food and Drug Administration and commencing Phase 2 studies in the second half of 2020. Margaret also co-Founded the spin-out company SapVax with US$6 million funding from BioMotiv USA to take self-adjuvanting cancer vaccines based on a novel chemistry platform, to clinical trial (see: https://sapvaxllc.com). She has also entered a licensing and research and development agreement with the New Zealand company Living Cell Technologies (http://www.lctglobal.com) to progress two series of lipopeptide drug candidates to clinical trial for the treatment of obesity and migraine respectively.

ACS Division of Medicinal Chemistry

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