Coulter Partners places Head of Research for Summit Therapeutics

Coulter Partners was pleased to partner with Summit Therapeutics to secure the appointment of Dr Dave Powell as Head of Research. Summit is a biopharmaceutical company focused on discovery and development to advance therapies for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (‘DMD’) and Clostridium difficile infection (‘CDI’). The company has recently announced a number of key appointments to strengthen its research and development team as it progresses its lead candidates towards late stage clinical trials and advances its earlier stage development pipeline.

“This strengthening of our research and development team will help to ensure the organisation has the leadership, depth of knowledge and expertise needed to support ezutromid and ridinilazole as they enter crucial stages in their clinical evaluation and support progression of our earlier stage utrophin development pipeline,” commented David Roblin, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Medical Officer of Summit. ” Dave Powell’s skills in discovery research and leading collaborative research programmes between industry and academia will support our strategic alliance with the University of Oxford. I thank the team at Coulter Partners for conducting an excellent search on our behalf.”

Dave Powell, PhD

Dr Dave Powell will join Summit from GSK where he is currently Director and Head of the Crick-GSK Biomedical LinkLabs, based at GSK’s UK R&D hub at Stevenage, UK, and The Francis Crick Institute in London. He was awarded a BSc and MSc from the National University of Ireland Galway, before completing a PhD in biochemistry at Cardiff University. Starting at GSK in 1995, Dr Powell joined a team working on Lead Optimisation, Structure Activity Relationships and compound mechanism of action support. Moving to Philadelphia in 1997, he switched focus to study novel targets emerging from the collaboration with Human Genome Sciences, and he successfully led the team that identified and linked BACE with Alzheimer’s disease in 1999. He then had successive management positions across discovery biology at GSK’s R&S site in Harlow, UK, with a focus on assay development, high throughput screening design and implementation, and lead optimisation support. This included multiyear involvement with GSK’s LpPLA2 programmes. He was appointed Director in Molecular Discovery Research in 2010, with subsequent department leadership positions at GSK’s site in Stevenage, UK. Appointed to his most recent role in 2014, he has been leading a highly embedded collaboration with the Crick Institute, in addition to providing support to GSK’s ‘Discovery Partnerships with Academia’ team which collaborates with academic groups in downstream drug discovery.