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2012 Award Winner

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The 2012 LRI Innovative Science Award went to Dr. Andreas Bender from the University of Cambridge.

Andreas Bender is a Lecturer for Molecular Informatics with the Unilever Centre for Molecular Science Informatics at the University of Cambridge. Until April 2010 he was an Assistant Professor for Cheminformatics and Pharmaceutical IT with the Leiden / Amsterdam Center for Drug Research and Head of the Pharma-IT Platform at Leiden University. In his work, he is involved with the integration and analysis of chemical and biological data, aimed at understanding phenotypic compound action (such as cellular readouts, and also organism-level effects) on a mechanistic level, ranging from compound efficacy to toxicity.

Before assuming faculty positions, Andreas was a Presidential Postdoctoral Fellow with the Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research in Cambridge/MA and the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, working on projects related to ligand-based drug design in Novartis’ Lead Discovery Informatics group. Andreas received his PhD from the University of Cambridge (UK) developing virtual screening methods working with Prof. Robert C. Glen at the Unilever Centre for Molecular Informatics. He was a Cambridge Gates Scholar and a member of Darwin College whilst at Cambridge and did his undergraduate studies in Berlin, Dublin and Frankfurt as a German National Merit Foundation scholar.

Andreas currently has more than 90 publications in the cheminformatics and bioinformatics fields to his credit and besides being a referee for more than 20 journals he serves on the editorial board of Combinatorial Chemistry and High-Throughput Screening (CCHTS) as well as the Journal of Chemical Informatics and Modeling (JCIM) and Expert Opinion in Drug Discovery. In 2010 he received the EFMC Prize for a Young Medicinal Chemist in Academia, conferred by the European Federation for Medicinal Chemistry (EFMC) and in 2011 he was the recipient of the Prize for Innovation in Medicinal and Pharmaceutical Chemistry by the German Chemical and Pharmaceutical Societies (GDCh and DPhG) and the Bayer Early Excellence in Science Award in the Chemistry Category.

The Award was presented in conjunction with the Federation of European Toxicologists and European Societies of Toxicology (EUROTOX), the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) and the International Society of Exposure Sciences (ISES), with Chemical Week as a media partner.

The other two finalists were Otto Hänninen, from the National Institute for Health and Welfare, Finland, and Jana Weiss from VU University, The Netherlands, with the following proposals respectively: “Biologically relevant exposure to source-specific particles” and “Use of accurate mass measurement to confirm the identity of potential emerging contaminants in Predicted Priority Pollutants Lists (PPP-LIST)”.

Related publications

Chad H. G. Allen, Alexios Koutsoukas, Isidro Cortés-Ciriano, Daniel S. Murrell, Thérèse E. Malliavin, Robert C. Glen and Andreas Bender, Improving the prediction of organism-level toxicity through integration of chemical, protein target and cytotoxicity qHTS data, Toxicology Research, 2016, 5, 883-894.

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