Professor John Atack

Prof. Atack is currently Professor of Molecular Pharmacology & Director of the Translational Drug Discovery Group at the University of Sussex. In this role, he has established a portfolio of neuroscience, oncology and opportunistic drug discovery projects and has helped raise over £8 million to fund them.

Prior to joining the University of Sussex, Prof. Atack gained extensive (>20 years) experience in neuroscience drug discovery initially with Merck & Co. in Harlow, UK (1989-2006) and then (2006-2012) with Johnson and Johnson, where as Head of Department he led a group of ~30 neuroscientists in San Diego before moving to lead ~90 neuroscientists in Belgium. He has worked on enzyme, ion channel and GPCR targets that cover a range of CNS disorders including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, schizophrenia, anxiety, depression, cognitive impairment and addiction. He has over 150 publications and a proven track record of leading projects all the way from Target Identification/Target Validation through to clinical development and Phase 2a Proof-of-Concept and has been a major contributor for 14 compounds that have entered development of which 7 have progressed into clinical studies.

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