Executive Chairman, SYNthesis med chem
- Biotech and Life Sciences
Andrew Wilks had a successful career as an academic scientist at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, were he discovered, inter alia, JAK1 and JAK2; and departing to join the “Dark Side”, as founder and Chief Scientific Officer of Cytopia, where he was involved in the discovery and development of new drugs that inhibit members of the JAK family of kinases. He is co-founder and Executive Chairman of SYN|thesis med chem (with Dr Xian Bu) (2007), Qubist Molecular Design (with Dr Herbert Treutlein and Dr Jun Zeng) (2009), Synkinase (With Dr Xian Bu) (2010), and Catalyst Therapeutics (with Prof D Huang) (2012) companies that provide drug discovery services to the Australian and overseas pharmaceutical industry. SYN|thesis med chem is a thriving medicinal chemistry company with offices in US, UK and Australia and a large medicinal chemistry facilities in Shanghai, China. Wilks has published 1 book, >100 peer reviewed publications, and >50 US patents and patent applications. His work has been cited more than 7000 times in the scientific literature. He is a member of the board and/or scientific advisory board of a number of Australian and overseas biotech companies and holds an Adjunct/Honorary Professorship in the Department of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences at Monash University, where he is developing a drug discovery programme focussed on kinases of the Malarial parasite Plasmodium falciparum. He is also a Fellow in the Chemical Biology Lab at WEHI. He was the inaugural winner of the Australian Biobusiness Award in 2007, and was elected to the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering in the same year.