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Anton Bespalov obtained his MD degree from Pavlov Medical University (St. Petersburg) and after completion of PhD studies in St. Petersburg and Utrecht held NIH-supported Fellowships at Medical College of Virginia (Richmond, VA) and Scripps Institute (La Jolla, CA). After habilitation (DMedSci) in 2000, Anton acted as a research director of Valdman Institute of Pharmacology. In 2004, Anton joined Abbott (later AbbVie) but maintained close connections to Pavlov Medical University where he is a professor at the Institute of Pharmacology and chaired the University’s Scientific Advisory Board.  During his tenure at Abbott / AbbVie as head of pharmacology department, Anton and his teams have brought several compounds into preclinical and clinical development, supported licensing and due diligence decisions. Anton has established and managed research contracts and collaborations with 100+ biotech companies, CROs and academic labs around the world. Founded and leads several international initiatives on preclinical data quality (co-chair of the ECNP Preclinical Data Forum: for more information click here).

MartinMartinMartin C. Michel is a physician trained in experimental and clinical pharmacology in Essen (Germany) and San Diego (California). He headed the Nephrology and Hypertension Research Laboratory in Essen (1993-2002), the Department of Pharmacology & Pharmacotherapy at the University of Amsterdam (The Netherlands, 2003-2011) and was Global Head of Product and Pipeline Scientific Support at Boehringer Ingelheim (2011-2016). Since 2012 he is Professor of Pharmacology at the Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz (Germany). He has published more than 500 scientific articles, has been Editor-in-Chief of Naunyn-Schmiedeberg’s Archives of Pharmacology and also serves on the board of many pharmacological, physiological and urological journals. He is serving as chair of IUPHAR committees on β3-adrenoceptors and on data reproducibility. His research focusses on urogenital and cardiovascular pharmacology.

Maybe you want to read Martin's short opinion piece "Trust me - I'm a scientist" published on our web side (“Reproduced with permission from PhysiologyNews 101 (2015): 33-35")!


Björn Gerlach studied biology at the University of Giessen, Germany, to obtain his Diploma with a focus on immunology, microbiology and biochemistry. He started his PhD at the German Cancer Research Centre in Heidelberg but after one year moved with his supervisor, Prof. Dr. Henning Walczak, to Imperial College London. After obtaining the PhD degree, Björn moved back to Germany to join Abbott (later AbbVie) as a Postdoctoral Fellow. He worked on biomarkers in the field of neurodegenerative diseases and neuroprotective / neurodegenerative therapies. Beside the lab work, Björn managed externally funded PPP projects where his responsibilities ranged from contract management to supervision of the research at CROs.

ChristophChristophChristoph Emmerich studied Biochemistry at the Universities of Bielefeld and Göttingen, Germany and obtained his Diploma in 2005. After a research period at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research in Sydney, Australia, he carried out his PhD studies in the fields of cancer biology and apoptosis at the German Cancer Research Centre (DKFZ) in Heidelberg and at the Imperial College London. In 2011, he joined the MRC Protein Phosphorylation and Ubiquitylation Unit (MRC-PPU) as a postdoctoral fellow to work with Professor Sir Philip Cohen, focussing on signal transduction mechanisms regulating the Innate Immune system. During his time at the MRC-PPU, Christoph was directly involved in a collaboration with six of the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies, creating an interface between Academia and Industry with the main aim to help accelerate the development of future drugs targeting protein kinases and the ubiquitylation system for the improved treatment of disease.