Dr. McKerrow leads a consortium of academic and industry scientists dedicated to the discovery and development of new drugs for neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). This consortium, the Center for Discovery and Innovation in Parasitic Diseases, is focused on drug discovery and development through Phase I clinical trials. The Center pioneered the development of high-throughput screening assays for seven neglected diseases, ranging from single-cell protozoa like Trypanosoma brucei and Trypanosoma cruzi, to complex multicellular helminths (worms) like Schistosoma and Brugia. Over 30 companies have shared compound libraries with the Center. The Center includes expertise in structure-based drug design, encompassing both computational approaches and structure-guided medicinal chemistry, and maintains animal models of NTDs for proof of concept studies. Among its accomplishments, the Center discovered and developed a drug for Chagas’ disease through a successful pre-IND meeting with the FDA. The Center has also received Orphan-Drug Designation from the FDA for two drugs targeting NTDs in a “repurposing” screening campaign.
Distinguished Professor and Dean, Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences
Distinguished Professor of Pathology