Mastering molecular chess to mine nature’s medicine chest: the 2013 Rutherford Lecture

by Distinguished Professor Margaret Brimble, University of Auckland

7.30 pm Thursday, 2 May

Where: Palmerston North City Library, 4 The Square

 It has long been realised that natural products provide an invaluable platform for developing front-line drugs. Two-thirds of all new drugs approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in the last 25 years were natural products or were inspired by natural products. The intricate chemistry of nature has evolved over millions of years, but today we can craft this same chemistry in the laboratory over a much shorter period.

This talk will show how natural products derived from either microorganisms that live in extreme environments, or algal blooms, can be harnessed to develop anticancer, antibacterial and antiviral drugs and drugs to treat neurodegenerative diseases. Professor Brimble will also describe her recent experience as part of a commercial drug discovery team, developing drugs to treat traumatic brain injury and melanoma vaccines that will be used for human clinical trials.

Distinguished Professor Margaret Brimble was awarded the Rutherford Medal in 2012 as a result of her achievements in the synthesis of bioactive natural products. Distinguished Professor Brimble is the Chair of Organic and Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Auckland and is also a Principal Investigator in the Maurice Wilkins Centre for Molecular Biodiscovery. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand and the Royal Society of Chemistry in the UK and a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

This is a free public lecture. All are welcome, but please register your intention to attend at:

http://www.royalsociety.org.nz/events/annual/rutherford-lecture/2013-rutherford-lecture-mastering-molecular-chess/