< Back to Inductees

Ruth R. Wexler, Ph.D.

Dr. Ruth Wexler

Dr. Ruth Wexler received her B. A. degree in Chemistry with honors, with a minor in biology from Boston University in 1977, and her Ph.D. degree in Organic Chemistry from the University of Pennsylvania in 1982 under the direction of Professor Amos B. Smith, III.  Dr. Wexler started her career at the DuPont Company, as a Research Chemist in the Medicinal Chemistry Section of the Biomedical Products Division. While at the DuPont Experimental Station she was promoted to positions of increasing leadership responsibility and in 1998 was promoted to Executive Director.  In 2001, she joined the Bristol-Myers Squibb Company as Executive Director, Discovery Chemistry, (post-acquisition of DuPont Pharmaceuticals Company) and in the fall of 2002, she moved to Hopewell site in New Jersey where she currently heads the medicinal chemistry efforts directed at Cardiovascular Diseases.  

 During her career, Dr. Wexler has led research groups focused on the design and synthesis of drug candidates directed at Cardiovascular/Metabolic Disease (hypertension, atherosclerosis, thrombosis, heart failure and obesity), Inflammatory Diseases, and Alzheimer’s Disease. Her group has been involved in many innovative advances, most notably in the Cardiovascular area, where their research efforts have resulted in two important marketed Cardiovascular drugs: Cozaar®, an angiotensin II receptor antagonist; the first novel antihypertensive agent in this class, and more recently Eliquis®, a factor Xa inhibitor; a novel anticoagulant.  In addition, her team has discovered 18 additional compounds which were selected for clinical evaluation across a wide range of mechanisms of action.

She has been active in both the Medicinal Chemistry Division and Organic Chemistry Division of the American Chemical Society where she served the Medicinal Chemistry Division as a member of Long Range Planning Committee (1996-1999), as a member of the Predoctoral Fellowship program Committee (1998-2001), and as an Industrial Councilor (2003-2005). In addition, she served the Organic Division as a member of the Executive Committee (1997-2000). Her professional activities include serving on NIH Medicinal Chemistry A Study Section (1999-2003).

She was honored in 2004 as one of twelve Outstanding New Jersey Women in Research by the New Jersey Association for Biomedical Research. In 2011, she was a recipient of the Bristol-Myers Squibb Ondetti and Cushman award for her leadership role in the discovery of Eliquis®. She has been selected as the recipient of the 2015 E.B. Hershberg Award for Important Discoveries in Medicinally Active Substances. Ruth has co-authored over 190 peer-reviewed scientific publications and patents, and has contributed several review articles and book chapters largely in the area of cardiovascular research.  

ACS Division of Medicinal Chemistry

Webmaster:  secretary@acsmedchem.org