Recorded Webinar: Focusing Global Platforms & Novel Technology on Immediate Health Challenges

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Focusing Global Platforms & Novel Technology on Immediate Health Challenges

Recorded live June 11, 2020

In this webinar, panelists Chas Bountra (Professor, University of Oxford) and Monica Coenraads (Executive Director, Rett Syndrome Research Trust), together with moderator Ashley Farley (Associate Officer, Gates Foundation), discussed their approaches and best practices toward successful medical innovation. 

Webinar Summary

Today more than ever, innovation and technology are needed to address the many health challenges that the world is facing. Join us in a special conversation with panelists Professor Chas Bountra (Pro Vice-Chancellor Innovation, University of Oxford) and Monica Coenraads (Executive Director & Co-Founder, Rett Syndrome Research Trust) and hear about case studies of successful medical innovation from those who know it firsthand.

Professor Bountra worked on the development of candidate drugs for several diseases, including novel treatments for cancer chemotherapy and Irritable Bowel Syndrome. He is currently working with nine pharmaceutical companies, eight disease foundations and more than 100 academic labs to develop new drugs for a range of common and rare diseases to “Innovate at Scale”.

Monica Coenraads’ involvement with Rett Syndrome began the day her then two-year-old daughter was diagnosed with the disorder. Under her leadership, over $78 million has been raised for Rett Syndrome, which has funded basic research to understand the function of the gene MECP2, identification of disease biomarkers in blood and spinal fluid, and gene therapy to replace mutations with healthy copies of MECP2 including a clinical trial with Novartis.

This special webinar is moderated by Ashley Farley (Associate Officer Knowledge & Research Services, BMGF), who moderated our previous webinar on Open Access with the leaders of PubChem and ChEMBL.

Featuring these leading innovators...

Chas Bountra

Chas Bountra, Ph.D.

Professor, University of Oxford

Chas Bountra is the Pro Vice-Chancellor Innovation and Professor of Translational Medicine at the University of Oxford. Prior to that, he was the Vice President and Head of Biology at GlaxoSmithKline and was involved in the identification of more than 40 clinical candidates for many gastro-intestinal, inflammatory and neuro-psychiatric diseases. He was involved in the launch and development of the first treatment for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (Alosetron) and was the first to show that neurokinin NK1 antagonists are anti-emetic in preclinical and clinical studies. In 2012 he was voted one of the “top innovators in the industry”.

Monica Coenraads

Monica Coenraads

Executive Director, Rett Syndrome Research Trust

Monica Coenraads co-founded the Rett Syndrome Research Trust in 2008. As Executive Director she oversees all aspects of the organization, including day-to-day operations, strategic direction, fundraising and communications. Together with her colleagues and with input from advisors and the scientific community at large, Monica sets and executes the Trust’s research agenda. Monica has two honorary doctorate degrees, one from the University of Massachusetts Medical School received in 2015 and one from the University of Edinburgh received in 2019.

Ashley Farley

Ashley Farley

Associate Officer, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Ashley Farley is an Associate Officer of Knowledge and Research Services at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. In this capacity, she serves on the core Open Access team, focusing on the foundation’s Open Access Policy’s implementation. This includes the development of Chronos, a newly created service for its grantees and staff, as well as, leading the implementation of Gates Open Research, a revolutionary publishing platform hosted by F1000. This work has sparked a passion for promoting open access, believing that freely accessible knowledge has the power to improve and save lives.