David E Leahy has over 30 years experience in drug discovery and development working as scientist, manager and entrepreneur in innovative new technology, strategic change, and business start up. Until October 2015 he was Founder and CEO of Molplex, a new class of drug discovery companies and a Visiting professor at the University of Sunderland.
Molplex AI systems were acquired by C4X in July 2016. He is now proprietor of “The Discovery Bus Ltd” a new company developing AI technologies for the Life Sciences.
Following a Ph.D. in Physical Organic Chemistry, he spent 15 years in Research with what is now AstraZeneca developing numerous innovative technologies alongside active drug discovery projects. At Zeneca he managed a major component of the drug discovery operation while also leading global strategic change initiatives aimed at improving productivity, particularly in the pre-clinical phase. He left AstraZeneca to found Cyprotex, a unique, commercially successful and globally recognised company which is now the world’s leading ADME Tox CRO. He led the company through start up, flotation on the London Stock Exchange and on to commercial success as CEO and CSO. He left Cyprotex in 2005 to pursue new business ideas, including Inkspot Science and Molplex and in 2007, he was appointed to a position at Newcastle University as a “Professor of Practice” in the Business School where he was an advisor to Science City, a three-way (City, Region and University) collaboration focussed on improving the business environment for drug discovery companies in Newcastle and its surrounding region. He has extensive hands on research experience in the development of novel software based solutions to automation of drug design.
He grew up in Baildon, Shipley, West Yorkshire and attended the Salts Grammar School in Saltaire. He did his degree in Natural Sciences at St. John’s College, Cambridge University and then prior to beginning his PhD studies, worked as a volunteer teacher of science and mathematics in Sabah, Malaysia and was the Head of Science for several years at what was then called SMK Menggatal in Kota Kinabalu. Returning to England in 1979 he began a PhD with Prof Alan R Katritzky at the University of East Anglia, during which he spent 2 years at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida.
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