Access to Expertise

The Translational Research Team facilitates access to external professional expertise for an accelerated progression of your project.

Our ‘Access to Expertise’ scheme aims to enable the researchers to access world-leading expertise and advise across multiple key areas when progressing your translational project.

After an initial discussion with the Translational Research Team (TRT), we will be able to match you to the most relevant expert to discuss your project and ideas in detail in a 1-2-1 meeting.

Experts in Residence

David Fox (Vulpine Science and Learning), has been our Entrepreneur-in-Residence (EiR) at the University of Birmingham since 2019. David has over 18 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry along with expertise in STEM education and training. He joined Pfizer in 1993 as a medicinal chemist Team Leader and was Senior Director heading up the Chemistry Section for 11 years, working across various therapeutic areas including antivirals and cardiovascular. David brings vast experience in drug discovery from early conception to preclinical evaluation having been involved in the identification of eleven development candidates, from eight mechanistic classes, including four Phase II compounds. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry, where he introduced a series of precompetitive workshops to help drive increased cross-sector collaboration in pharmaceutical research.

At the University of Birmingham David is supporting the Drug Discovery and Development program with his expertise in translation of fundamental research to preclinical drug development stages.

External Advisers

In addition to our EiR, we have built a portfolio of ex-industry scientists and entrepreneurs who are able to advise on and help design a bespoke translational strategy for accelerated development of your project. The areas of expertise include early drug discovery, digital health, biomarkers and diagnostics, biologic therapeutics, medical devices, regulatory affairs, product planning and business development.

Professor Alan Boyd, a Biochemistry and Medicine graduate from the University of Birmingham, is one of the longest serving advisors and mentors in our portfolio. After a successful 30-year career in the pharmaceutical industry, Alan set up Boyds Consultants in 2005. His past roles have included cardiovascular medical research Team Lead and later Director of Clinical and Medical Affairs at ICI Pharma, Canada; Head of Medical Research for Zeneca Pharmaceuticals; Director of Research and Development for Ark Therapeutics Ltd., leading the development of their gene based medicines portfolio. Alan’s focus is to aid and support early stage life science-based companies and universities in the translation and development of their research ideas into therapeutics. Alan’s contribution to medicines development has so far resulted in approximately 15 products being licensed as prescription medicines including seven cell and gene therapies. Alan is an appointed Honorary Professor of the College of Medical and Dental Sciences at the University of Birmingham, a Fellow of the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Medicine and in 2021 was awarded a Fellowship of the Academy of Medical Sciences in recognition of his significant contribution to the development of medicines across several therapeutic areas, most notably in the field of cell and gene advanced therapeutics.

Please contact the TRT to discuss your project and if appropriate, to match you to the most relevant expert to progress your project.