Campus News

Chu Lectureship features international expert in drug development

One of the world’s leading experts in drug manufacturing and development and a primary investigator in the discovery of Januvia, a revolutionary drug that helps lower blood sugar levels in adults with Type 2 diabetes, will be the featured speaker at the annual University of Georgia College of Pharmacy Chu Lectureship, being held virtually on April 14 at 11 a.m.

Emma Parmee (Submitted photo)

Dr. Emma Parmee, global head of discovery sciences at Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson and Johnson, will address “New Directions in Chemistry: Expanding Exploration of Chemical Space” at the Chu Lecture, which was selected as part of UGA’s Signature Lecture series this spring.

UGA’s Signature Lectures highlight speakers noted for their broad, multidisciplinary appeal and compelling bodies of work. Lectures are supported by endowments, while others honor notable figures and milestones in the university’s history. The College of Pharmacy’s Chu Lectureship recognizes the outstanding accomplishments of Distinguished Research Professor and Professor Emeritus Dr. David Chu, who has spent his entire career researching new drugs for the treatment of viral infections and cancer.

With almost 30 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, Parmee earned her Bachelor of Arts and Ph.D. degrees in organic chemistry from Oxford University and held a NATO postdoctoral fellowship at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She has worked in numerous therapeutic areas at major pharmaceutical companies, including Merck and now Janssen. Her milestone Januvia discovery allowed for the treatment of Type 2 diabetes without the side effects of some of the previously available treatments. She has received several awards throughout her career, including the Thomas Alva Edison Patent Award and the Gordon E. Moore Medal from the Society of Chemical Industry.

“We are distinctly privileged to welcome Dr. Emma Parmee to the College of Pharmacy,” said Dr. Brian Cummings, head of the pharmaceutical and biomedical sciences department at the College of Pharmacy. “Dr. Parmee will assuredly be a fascinating speaker, and her presence at our virtual podium will be an outstanding way to honor Dr. David Chu, whose accomplishments in drug discovery are internationally known.”

Registration is required to attend and participate in the Chu Lecture, which will be presented on Zoom’s webinar platform. Parmee will end her remarks with a brief question and answer period. Immediately following her presentation, Chu will be honored for his years of dedicated research and service to UGA and the College Pharmacy, and Dr. David Crich, Georgia Research Alliance Professor and David Chu Eminent Scholar in Drug Design, will be recognized.

For further information on the College of Pharmacy’s Chu Lectureship, contact Toni Phelabaum, executive assistant to the dean.