Campus News

Disease experts headline Conference on Drug Discovery Nov. 5 at Georgia Center

Disease experts headline Conference on Drug Discovery Nov. 5 at Georgia Center

UGA’s Center for Drug Discovery will host its second Conference on Drug Discovery on Nov. 5. The event features three renowned experts on HIV, hepatitis C and inflammatory diseases: Raymond Schinazi of Emory University, Jeffrey Glenn of Stanford University and Jilly Evans of Amira Pharmaceuticals.

The day-long event will be held in Mahler Auditorium of the Georgia Center for Continuing Education Conference Center and Hotel. Registration is open free to the public.

Schinazi is the Frances Winship Walters Professor of Pediatrics and Chemistry, Senior Research Career Scientist and core director of Emory University’s Virology/Drug Discovery CFAR Center for AIDS Research. His presentation is entitled “Curative Therapies for HIV and HCV.”

Schinazi is best known for his innovative and pioneering work on d4T (stavudine), 3TC (lamivudine), FTC (emtriva), D-D4FC (reverset), RCV (racivir) and DAPD (amdoxovir), all drugs that are now approved by the FDA or are at various stages of clinical development. He is the founder of several biotechnology companies focusing on antiviral drug discovery and development, has published more than 420 peer-reviewed papers and seven books, and holds more than 70 U.S. patents.

Glenn, who will present “New Approaches to Hepatitis C,” is director of the Center for Hepatitis and Liver Tissue Engineering at Stanford School of Medicine and associate professor of medicine, gastroenterology and hematology at Stanford. His primary research interest is molecular virology, with a strong emphasis on translating this knowledge into novel antiviral therapies. Exploitation of hepatic stem cells, development of a small animal model for HCV and engineered human liver tissues are other research interests.

Evans is a founding member and lead biologist of Amira Pharmaceuticals, a biopharmaceutical company in San Diego that has developed small molecule compounds for clinical assessment in inflammatory diseases. She will address the “Development of FLAP Inhibitors: Novel Drugs for the Treatment of Inflammatory Diseases.”

Evans received her Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of British Columbia, where she worked with Michael Smith, winner of the Nobel Prize in 1993 for the development of site-specific mutagenesis. Prior to founding Amira, Evans worked at Merck Frosst Canada as a lead biochemist in the Merck team that worked on COX-2 inhibitors.