Jan 282016

BalzariniJAN BALZARINI obtained his Master Degree in Engineer in Chemistry and Agriculture, Specialisation in Industrial Microbiology and Biochemistry, at Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium.  In 1984 obtained hisPhD  in Agricultural Sciences in Prof. Erik De Clercq Lab. From October 2001 is Full Professor (“Gewoon Hoogleraar”) at the Faculty of Medicine, and from 2006  is head of the Laboratory of Virology and Chemotherapy, Rega Institute for Medical Research, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium.Member of the Grand Jury of the René Descartes-Prize of the European Commission. Honorary Visiting Professor at Cardiff University, School of Pharmacy (2011-2013). Visiting Professor at the University “Tor Vergata” at Rome, Italy (2004-2013). Cardiff University Distinguished Visiting Fellow 2009/2010 at the Welsh School of Pharmacy . Approximately 160 first-author, and more than 940 co-author papers in international peer-reviewed journals between 1980 and 2014. (Co)authored 16 book chapters, ~ 130 proceeding articles, and more than 500 published abstracts between 1980 and 2014. Among his scientific interests there are: chemotherapy of (retro)viral diseases with special emphasis on herpes virus infections (i.e. herpes simplex, varicella-zoster virus, cytomegalovirus), influenza virus and retrovirus infections (including AIDS); chemotherapy of malignant diseases, including combined gene/chemotherapy of cancer; molecular mechanisms of action and pharmacology of antiviral and antitumor compounds, in particular nucleoside and nucleotide analogues and carbohydrate-binding agents; Molecular mechanisms of antiviral and anticancer drug resistance; virus replication (i.e. DNA polymerase, reverse transcriptase) and virus entry as target of therapeutic intervention; prodrug technologies to improve the antiviral/cancer drug activity of (non)nucleoside analogues. He received numerous awards, including :  Research (ISAR) (Laureat) “Carbohydrate-binding agents: a novel tool for the inhibition of enveloped viruses”, in 2011 Pharmacia-ASPET Award for Experimental Therapeutics-2011 of the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics .       “Discovery and development of novel concepts and drug leads for antiviral and anticancer chemotherapy”. He is holder of more than twenty approved and/or submitted patent applications of important antiretroviral drugs.

 BeckerSTEPHAN BECKER is the director of the Institute of Virology at the Philipps University Marburg. He studied Pharmaceutical Sciences and performed his PhD on energy metabolism of tumor cells. Then he moved to the Institute of Virology in Marburg where he started working with filoviruses, mainly on replication strategies of these highly pathogenic viruses. In 2006 he was appointed as a group leader at the Robert Koch Institut, Berlin before accepting a full professorship at the Philipps University, Marburg in 2008. He is speaker of the German research foundation funded collaborative research center 1021 “Sonderforschungsbereich 1021” and coordinates the section “Emerging Infections” of the German Center for Infection Research. Research interests are morphogenesis and pathogenicity of viruses causing hemorrhagic fevers. Viruses crossing the species barrier between animal and man (zoonotic viruses) represent a growing problem for our societies since the interfaces between animals and humans became more extended due to intensive land usage worldwide. In rare cases animal viruses can cause severe partially fatal diseases in the human host. Understanding the pathogenesis of those infections might provide new strategies to treat those diseases. A classic example for a viral zoonosis is Marburg virus, which jumps from bats to humans causing a hemorrhagic fever with high mortality. Basic mechanisms of how Marburg virus replicates in the host cell are still not understood and are in the focus of Stephan Becker`s research activities.

BenBerkhout-3519BEN BERKHOUT studied molecular biology at the Leiden University in the Netherlands and obtained his PhD in 1986 on a research project concerning the regulation of gene expression in RNA bacteriophages, in particular translational control by means of RNA structure. He performed postdoctoral research at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute of the Harvard Medical School in the field of molecular immunology and initiated HIV-1 research at the NIH in Bethesda. BB initiated a molecular virology research line in 1991 upon his return to the Netherlands and has been at the University of Amsterdam since then. He became Head of the Laboratory of Experimental Virology and was appointed Professor of Human Retrovirology. BB is editor for several journals (Retrovirology, Virus Research, RNA Biology, Journal of Biomedical Science) and associate editor for many more (NAR, JVI, JGV, JBC etc.). BB published over 410 peer-reviewed manuscripts on diverse topics concerning HIV-1 replication, virus evolution, virus discovery, new antiviral therapeutic strategies and HIV-1 vaccine design. He received the Retrovirology Prize 2008 for his pioneering research on the structure and function of the HIV-1 RNA genome. His work received >13,400 citations and he has an H-index of 61.

BottaMAURIZIO BOTTA graduated with honors in chemistry from the University of Rome in 1974. After his military service he returned to work at the Institute of Organic Chemistry, University of Rome with the title of Fellow , under the guidance of Prof. R. Nicoletti . In 1977 he started at the University of New Brunswick (Canada) , a period of research under the guidance of Prof. K. Wiesner , earning his PhD in November 1979 . Since December 1979 resumed scientific and educational cooperation with Prof. R. Nicoletti at the University of Rome becoming a researcher . Winner of a bag NATO in 1985, he traveled for a year in laboratories of Prof. S. Hanessian of the ‘ University of Montreal (Canada) , as invited researcher .In October 1987 as an Associate Professor of Pharmaceutical Chemistry , he has held the chair of Analysis Pharmaceutical Chemistry III of the Degree Course in Pharmaceutical Chemistry and Technology of Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Siena and Bioorganic Chemistry for substitution at the Faculty of Mathematical, Physical and Natural Sciences. In the periods July-September 1987 – July September 1988 and from November to January 1989 he was Invited Professor at the University of Montreal (Canada). Since 2000 he is Full Professor of Pharmaceutical Chemistry at the University of Siena and holds the task of teaching Complements of Medicinal Chemistry and Synthesis and Design of Drugs for the Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Chemistry , University of Siena. In years 2002-2008 he held the position of Director of the Department of Drug Chemistry and Technology University of Siena. Prof. Botta was a member of the Board of the Division of Pharmaceutical Chemistry Society Italian Chemical from 1998 to 2004 , Director of the School ‘s annual ” Laboratory Methods Synthetic Medicinal Chemistry ” organizer of the workshop ” European Workshop on Drug  Design ” , now in its seventh edition and ‘ ” European Workshop in Drug Synthesis ” , at the University of Siena and he  is also a member of ‘ editorial board of scientific journalssuch as ” ChemMedChem ” , “Current Pharmaceutical Design” and ” Journal of Medicinal Chemistry ” . Since January 2008 he is Adjunct Professor at Temple University ‘s College of Science and Technology in Philadelphia (USA). The research group of Prof. Botta, currently consists of about 30 young people between undergraduates , graduate students,research grant and a single researcher , is active in the synthesis and structure determination of biologically active natural products , organic synthesis and testing of potential agents anti-viral and anti-cancer , anti-tuberculosis and synthesis of antifungal compounds . The techniques used to these studies can be summarized in conventional techniques for organic synthesis , synthesis techniques for small molecules in the solid phase , the use of enzymes , microwaves , and parallel synthesis, also  molecular modeling techniques , such as docking , molecular dynamics , QSAR and 3D QSAR Virtual screening , generation of virtual libraries are used for the discovery and optimization of potential drugs . Recently, next to the chemical synthesis and Computational has also added the analytical chemistry for the determination of parameters Pharmacokinetic necessary for the optimization of pharmacologically active molecules . The scientific production of Professor Botta is summed up in about 460 publications in journals International , 15 patents and more than 150 conference papers .

CamarasaMARIA JOSÉ CAMARASA  obtained her PhD In Chemistry by the Universidad Complutense of Madrid. She was Head of the Chemotherapy Department of IQM-CSIC; Vice-Director of Medicinal Chemistry Institute (IQM-CSIC); President of the Spanish Society of Medicinal Chemistry (SEQT) (2004-2007); member of the executive board of the Chemistry Area of ANEP (2005-2008), coordinator of Medicinal Chemistry. She is actually Research Professor (Full professor) at the Medicinal Chemistry Institute of CSIC (IQM-CSIC), Madrid, Spain; co-coordinator of the Chemical Science and Technologies area of the CSIC; Head the of nucleosides and analogues group and Member of the executive board of International Society for Nucleosides, Nucleotides and Nucleic Acids (IS3Na). She was awarded in 2001 with the prestigious René Descartes-Prize of the European Commission. Her research interests are the Medicinal Chemistry, drug-design and discovery, antivirals, anticancer, antiinfectives, pro-drugs, organic chemistry, carbohydrates, nucleosi(ti)des, peptides.

176661cROBERTO  DI SANTO Graduated in Chemistry in 1986 – “La Sapienza” University of Rome and from 1988 had a scholarship in the Pasteur Institute –Fondazione Cenci Bolognetti, Università degli Studi di Roma “La Sapienza”. In 1994 graduated in Pharmacy cum laude at “La Sapienza” University of Rome. From 1996 was Researcher SSD C07x-in Pharmaceutical Chemistry and from 1998 became associate professor. He as multiple research topics, among which chemioterapeutic drugs and antiviral drugs (HIV, HCV, Chicungunya, polio, influenza). He works also on neuroactive compounds (anti-Alzehimer).


ERIC FREED received his Ph.D. in 1990 in the laboratories of Drs. Rex Risser and Howard Temin at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and did postdoctoral work with Dr. Temin at UW-Madison in 1991.  His work in Madison focused on the function of the murine leukemia virus and HIV envelope glycoproteins in membrane fusion and virus entry.  He joined the Laboratory of Molecular Microbiology at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (LMM/NIAID) in 1992, where he worked with Dr. Malcolm Martin on a variety of topics relating to virus assembly and entry/post-entry events in the HIV replication cycle.  In 1997, he was appointed as a Tenure-Track Investigator in LMM/NIAID, and he was promoted to a tenured Senior Investigator position in 2002.  Dr. Freed joined the HIV Drug Resistance Program in 2003.  He was an organizer of the 2004 Cold Spring Harbor Retroviruses conference, 2006 ASCB Cell Biology of Retroviruses conference, and 2012 Keystone Conference “Frontiers in HIV Pathogenesis, Therapy and Eradication.”  In 2009, he was appointed as the first Editor-in-Chief of Viruses; he also currently serves on the Editorial Boards of Journal of Virology, Virology, Open Virology Journal, Retrovirology, Advances in Virology, Frontiers in Virology, and Journal of Molecular Biology.  Dr. Freed was selected as an NCI Mentor of Merit in 2010 for excellence in mentoring and guiding the careers of trainees in cancer research, and he was appointed to the NCI Senior Biomedical Research Service in 2011.  He is currently serving as the Chair of the NIH Virology Interest Group, a member of the NIH AIDS Discovery and Development of Therapeutics study section, and an organizer for the 2014 Keystone Conference “Viral Entry, Assembly, Exit and Spread.”  He also currently serves as an adjunct Professor in the Department of Cell Biology and Molecular Genetics at the University of Maryland, College Park and is Co-director of the University of Maryland Virology Program.

GagoFEDERICO GAGO studied Pharmacy at Complutense University, Madrid, and followed post-doctoral studies at the Physical Chemistry Laboratory,  Oxford University, under the supervision of Prof. W. Graham Richards. He  teaches Pharmacology at the Schools of Pharmacy and Medicine in the University of Alcalá (Madrid), one of the oldest European universities, where he is a Full Professor in the Department of Biomedical Sciences. He was Associate Director of the NFCR Center for Computational Drug Design (Oxford) from 2001 to 2006 and a member of the Editorial Advisory Board of Journal of Medicinal Chemistry from 2006 to 2010. Since 2001 he has been serving as an Editor-in-Chief for Journal of Computer-Aided Molecular Design and as a member of the Editorial Advisory Board for Anti-Cancer Agents in Medicinal Chemistry (formerly Current Medicinal Chemistry – Anti-Cancer Agents). Prof. Gago has authored more than 150 research papers in specialized scientific journals and has published several reviews and book chapters. His research interests are in the areas of structure-based drug design, receptor-based structure-activity relationships, and computer simulations of drug-targeted biomolecular systems including DNA, enzymes and pharmacological receptors.

HarrisREUBEN HARRIS is a Professor in the Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biophysics department, an Associate Director of the Institute of Molecular Virology, and a Member of the Masonic Cancer Center. He received his B.S. (1993) and Ph.D. (1997) degrees from the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada. He performed postdoctoral work at the Baylor College of Medicine (1997-8), at Yale University (1998), and at the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology (1998-2003). He joined the University of Minnesota as an Assistant Professor in the summer of 2003, became a tenured Associate Professor in 2008, and was promoted to Full Professor in 2013. As a Postdoctoral Fellow in Cambridge working with Dr. Michael Neuberger, Dr. Harris discovered a family of cellular enzymes that catalyze the conversion of the DNA base cytosine into the RNA base uracil. One member of this family is essential for generating antibody diversity (adaptive immunity) and several combine to provide protection from a wide variety of parasitic elements such as HIV (innate immunity). At least one member also becomes dyregulated in multiple human cancers and provides a major source of mutations. Dr. Harris has done pioneering studies in all of these important areas, thus far publishing over 100 manuscripts, filing 10 patents, and co-founding a company. He continues to run an academic research laboratory with multiple projects focused on the roles of these enzymes in immunity and carcinogenesis.

Mamuka KvaratskheliaMAMUKA KVARATSKHELIA is a Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences at the Ohio State University. He received his Ph.D. and postdoctoral training studying structural and functional properties of DNA modifying enzymes in Republic of Georgia and United Kingdome, respectively. Dr. Kvaratskhelia continued his research career in Dr. Le Grice’s laboratory, where he developed the mass spectrometry-based protein footprinting approach to map nucleic acid and inhibitor binding sites on HIV-1 proteins. Since 2003 Dr. Kvaratskhelia has been a faculty member at the Ohio State University College of Pharmacy. He is a recipient of the NIH Research Career Development Award (2007-2012) and currently serves as a member of the AIDS Discovery and Development of Therapeutics study section. The primary focus of Dr. Kvaratskhelia’s research group has been to better understand HIV-1 integrase structure and function as a therapeutic target and develop novel allosteric inhibitors with potent antiviral activities. His group identified a new class of small molecules that promote aberrant, higher order multimerization of HIV-1 integrase and potently inhibit HIV-1 replication. In addition, his group has elucidated structural and mechanistic foundations of how LEDGF/p75, a key cofactor of HIV-1 integrase, directs HIV-1 preintegration complexes to actively transcribed genes. More recently, Dr. Kvaratskhelia’s group has discovered BET proteins as cofactors of murine leukemic virus (MLV) integrase and demonstrated their significance for effective MLV integration at transcription start sites. These studies have opened up a new path for improving the safety of MLV based vectors for human gene therapy.

Le griceSTUART LE GRICE received his Ph.D. from the Department of Biochemistry, University of Manchester, UK, in 1976, where he studied the mechanisms of R-factor-mediated multidrug resistance in Escherichia coli. After postdoctoral training in the United Kingdom, Germany, and the United States, he was appointed Senior Scientist in the Central Research Units of Hoffmann La Roche, Basel, Switzerland, where he worked from 1984 to 1990 evaluating HIV-1 and HIV-2 enzymes as therapeutic targets. In 1990, he joined the faculty in the Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, Case Western Reserve University (CWRU), Cleveland, OH. Initially recruited as an Associate Professor of Medicine, he was awarded tenure in 1992, and in 1995 was promoted to Professor of Medicine, Biochemistry, and Oncology. From 1994 to 1999, he served as Director of the NIH-funded CWRU Center for AIDS Research. Dr. Le Grice joined the National Cancer Institute in 1999 as Chief of the Resistance Mechanisms Laboratory in the HIV Drug Resistance Program, Center for Cancer Research (CCR), and in 2005 was appointed to the Senior Biomedical Research Service. In 2006, he was appointed Head of the Center of Excellence in HIV/AIDS & Cancer Virology, CCR. He is a member of the CCR HIV and Cancer Virology faculty, Chemistry and Biology faculty, and the Steering Committee of the Molecular Targets Discovery Program. In addition to serving on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Biological Chemistry, Dr. Le Grice has been an ad hoc (1990-1999) and permanent Study Section member of NIH AIDS review panels (2000-2004), as well as an ad hoc reviewer for several international funding agencies.

21aec95FRANCO LORI  founded ViroStatics in 2005, serving as President and Chief Executive Officer. With 20 years of extensive experience in Biotech management, Dr. Lori has overseen the successful start-up of three biotechnology companies. Dr. Lori also has experience in investigative preclinical and clinical research interacting with a network of clinical, pharmaceutical, government, and basic science researchers in the USA, Europe, South America, and Africa. 
In 2000, Dr. Lori was recognized as a global “Hero in Medicine” for his achievements in HIV therapy. He has co-authored over 100 international peer-reviewed publications. Dr. Lori received his MD from the University of Parma and earned his PhD degree at the University of Pavia, Italy. He was Senior Investigator in the Laboratory of Tumor Cell Biology at the National Cancer Institute before co-founding RIGHT in 1994 where he serves as Board Director.
Fields of interest: drug development, nanotechnology, precision medicine, incurable diseases


PETER MATYUS achieved his M.S. in Synthetic Organic Chemistry at in 1975; the M. Litt. (Doctor title) in 1980; and the Degree in Medicinal Chemistry at the Technical University Budapest 1981. He obtained his habilitation at the A. Szent-Györgyi Univ., Szeged on 1997; and the C.Sc., D.Sc. at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. He pursuived with several Postdoctoral Fellowships of the A.v. Humboldt-Foundation (Inst. für Organische Chemie und Biochemie), University of Bonn (H. Wamhoff) (1982-1984, 1989, 1990); of the Ciba-Geigy Foundation for Promotion of Sciences Japan (Inst. for Chem. Res.), University of Kyoto (K. Tanaka) 1992-93; and the fellowship of the Australian Natl. University (John Curtin School of Medical Research) (G. Barlin) Canberra 1993 (1 month), and on 1994 (3 months). From 1997 he is the Head of the Department of Organic Chemistry at the Semmelweis University. Since 2008 he is the Director of the Drug Discovery and Safety Centre at the Semmelweis University. His memberships: 1999-2007 Chair of the Division of Organic and Medicinal Chemistry of the Hungarian Chemical Society (re-elected twice); 2007-2011 President of the Hungarian Chemical Society; 2002-2006 Member of the Council of Scientists, INTAS (EU, Brussels; re-elected); International Advisory Board of ChemMedChem. Associate Editor of Future Med. Chem; 2004-2010 Member of the Executive Committee, and Chair of Education and Training Committee of European Federation for Medicinal Chemistry (re-elected); Member of Medicinal Chemistry Subcommittee of IUPAC; Member of ACS; Founder and Board member of Paul Ehrlich MedChem Euro-PhD Network. He also won several awards such as: Zemplén-Prize, Hungarian Academy of Sciences 1989; ‘Nívó’-Prize, Hungarian Chemical Society, 1996. Genius Prize, Committee of the Hungarian Inventors, (twice) 1996, 1998; Jedlik Ányos Prize, Hungarian Patent Office, 2002; Kazay Prize, Hungarian Pharmaceutical Society, 2004; Than Károly Prize, Hungarian Chemical Society, 2005; Náray-Szabó Gábor Prize, Hungarian Chemical Society, 2006; Bruckner Prize, Hungarian Academy of Sciences 2009; PhD-Educational Prize, Semmelweis University, 2011. His research interests are medicinal chemistry of cardiovascular and central nervous systems, molecular modelling and synthesis of biologically active compounds; synthetic and mechanistic chemistry of pyridazines and nitrogen containing heterocycles.

MertensTHOMAS MERTENS studied Chemistry in Bonn and Medicine in Cologne (1968-1976). He obtained the MD Thesis (Dr. med.) on 1976 and his Habilitation on 1984. Thomas Mertens was medical assistant, training in internal medicine and surgery (1976–1977); he continued with a research fellowship for the postdoctoral training in immunology, virology and diagnostics, Institute of Virology, University of Cologne (1977–1985). In 1983 he reached the Board Certification in Microbiology and Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases. In 1985 he became Professor (C2) at the Institute of Virology, University of Cologne, from 1991 to 1998 he was Professor (C3), in the Dept. of Virology, Ulm University. He was Temporary Director of the Dept. Medical Hygiene, Ulm University Hospital from 1991 to 1992; and Dean of Studies at the Medical Faculty, Ulm University from 2003 to 2006. Since 1998 he is the Director of the Institute of Virology at the Ulm University Hospital. His research focuses: mechanisms of resistance of antiviral substances towards herpes viruses; the analysis of the biological function of the viral gene UL97; new targets for antiviral interference against human cytomegalovirus (HCMV); molecular mechanisms and functional relevance of host-cell genes modulation by HCMV; viral tegument proteins and Morphogenesis of HCMV; new organ culture model for analysis of HCMV infection; the characterization and function of G-protein coupled receptor homologs of HCMV; and the Clinical Virology.

PalùGIORGIO PALÙ received his M.D. degree from the University of Padova (1973) and the Specialty diplomas in Oncology (1976) and General Pathology (1978) from the University of Pavia. He worked as a Postdoctoral Fellow and Research Associate at the Tumor Institute, Jules Bordet, Université Libre, Bruxelles (1975), the Chester Beatty Research Institute-Royal Marsden Hospital, Royal Cancer Institute, London University, UK (1976-79), the Department of Pharmacology, Yale University, New Haven, CT (1980).Assistant Professor in Microbiology, University of Parma (1980-82); Associate Professor in Virology, University of Padova (1983-1989); Visiting Professor, Department of Molecular Biochemistry and Biophysics, Yale University, 1982,1984,1986; Division of Virology, National Institute for Medical Research, Mill Hill, London, UK, 1980,1985,1987; Division of Human Retrovirology, Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School (1990), Full Professor of Microbiology and Virology (since 1989), University of Padova. Director at the University of Padova: Institute of Microbiology (1991-1999); Department of Histology, Microbiology and Medical Biotechnologies, (1999-2002); Department of Molecular Medicine (since 2012); Head of the Padova GMP Cell-factory and of the Unit of Clinical Microbiology and Virology, Padova University Hospital (since 1996). Coordinator, PhD Course/School in Virology (since 1998) and in Biomedicine (since 2007); Member of the Board of the International PhD Programmes in Molecular Medicine, University of Ulm, Germany (since 2008), in Biomedicine and Translational Neurosciences, Temple University, Philadelphia, USA (since 2011); Adjunct Professor at the Medical School and at the Faculty of Sciences, University of Temple; Pro-Rector, University of Padova (2002-2004); Dean, Faculty of Medicine, University of Padova (2004-2011). GP has also served as a member of the scientific-technical Committee of the Italian Drug Agency (AIFA), of the directory Board of the Italian AIDS Commission, of the Istituto Superiore di Sanità (Rome) and of the Institute of Human Virology (Baltimore). Professor Palù is the running President of the European Society for Virology. Giorgio Palù has long-standing experience in the study of pathogenesis of viral infections and the design of viral and non-viral vectors for gene transfer, somatic gene therapy and vaccinology. He has made relevant contributions to the study of antimicrobial therapy and resistance and anticancer therapy with more than 400 publications and 10 patents. His basic research has provided a platform for finding new targets for antiviral therapy and new antivirals based on peptides and small molecules able to disrupt the interface of protein-protein interactions essential for viral replication.

CARLO FEDERICO PERNOCARLO FEDERICO PERNO is Professor of Virology at the University ‘of Rome Tor Vergata and Primary Unit’ Complex Molecular Virology, Policlinico Tor Vergata. Pin is also director of the School of Specialization in Microbiology and Virology. He graduated in 1980 in Medicine, Universita ‘di Roma “La Sapienza” with honors, in 1983 specializes in Oncology.
From 1986 to 1989 he was Assistant Professor at the National Cancer Institute. He works in the field of ‘AIDS since 1985, and has contributed to the discovery of some of the drugs still used for the treatment of HIV infection. He is a fellow of numerous research funds obtained from various public and private institutions, including EEC, CNR, Ministry of Health ‘, Ministry of University’ and Research, UNESCO, aimed at scientific and clinical research mainly on viral infections. Author of more ‘than a thousand scientific articles and presentations at international conferences. He received the 2001 Descartes Prize of the Community ‘European Excellence Research.

summaVINCENZO SUMMA  Head of Chemistry  IRBM Science Park spa from February 2010. IRBM Science Park is a research centre formally a spin-off of the Merck Research Laboratories locate in Rome. He graduated in  Chemistry at Università degli Studi di Roma ‘La Sapienza’ in 1991 and in 1996 obtained his Ph.D in Organich Chemistry at Bergische Universität Wuppertal. From 1992 to 1994  was researcher at University of Rome “La Sapienza” . He became Research Fellow Merck  from  March 1996 to  August 2001 . Here was promoted Senior Research Fellow (September 2001 );Senior Investigator Merck  (November 2005 ) and Director in the medicinal chemistry department  from November 2007to October 2009. From June 2010 is  Associate Researcher CNR-ITB National Research Council – Institute for Biomedical Technologies and from April 2013  Member of the Board of Directors at CNCCS Consortium (IRBM SP – Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche – Istituto Superiore di Sanità)


BIRGITTA M. WÖHRL  studied biology in Regensburg, Germany and in Cardiff, UK. She obtained her doctoral degree in bacterial genetics from the University of Osnabrück, Germany, in 1989. During her postdoctoral training at the Max-Planck-Institute for Genetics in Berlin and at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio, she worked on biochemical aspects of retroviral reverse transcriptases. In 1992 she was awarded a five year “AIDS-stipend” from the German Ministry of Education and Research. She joined the Max-Planck-Institute for Molecular Physiology in Dortmund, Germany in 1994 working on retroviral replication, AZT resistance and genetically engineered thymidylate kinases. In 2002 she received a position at the University of Bayreuth, Germany in the Department of Biopolymers and was promoted to Professor in 2005. Her research interests include the structure and function of retroviral enzymes, and of viral and cellular factors involved in HIV transcription, the elucidation of resistance mechanisms against antiviral drugs, the mechanism of action of antiviral compounds, and the replication of foamy viruses.

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