Drug Discovery Expert Joins Georgetown University
News May 10, 2006
Milton Brown, MD, PhD, an expert in the design, synthesis and evaluation of new therapeutic agents, will join Georgetown University on June 1, the University has announced.
Dr. Brown, who is a faculty member in Chemistry at the University of Virginia, will have a double appointment at Georgetown as an associate professor in the departments of Oncology and Neuroscience.
At the same time that he will be building upon and contributing to Georgetown's research programs in the areas of neuroscience and cancer-two of the Medical Center's strategic priorities-as well as pain research, Dr. Brown will lead the effort to halt or reverse progression of these diseases through new therapies.
"Dr. Brown's passion, drive and natural talent for drug discovery have made him a rising star in the field of medicinal chemistry," said Stuart Bondurant, MD, interim Executive Vice President for Health Sciences at Georgetown University and Executive Dean of the School of Medicine.
"His scientific contributions will be of immense value as Georgetown University Medical Center scientists seek to help patients by using the many promising findings from our laboratories."
"I'm a scientist looking to discover new medicines that stop cancer and stop diseases of the brain," said Dr. Brown.
"And I believe that in order to attack these problems, we have to develop teams of researchers to translate some of our basic science discoveries into new therapies. And I am dedicated to doing this kind of work."
The recruitment of Dr. Brown was led by the directors of Georgetown's major research sectors-Anatoly Dritschilo, MD, of Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, and Vassilios Papadopoulos, PharmD, PhD, of the Biomedical Graduate Research Organization.
Dr. Brown's talent for drug discovery was evident at Virginia, where, over the past five years, his laboratory tested nearly a thousand compounds for possible use as therapeutics to treat prostate cancer, acute myeloid leukemia, pain, and epilepsy. Human clinical trials are expected to be conducted on a number of these compounds.
He is in the process of optimizing and developing novel compounds based on this research.
Dr. Brown also evaluated 450 compounds to treat epilepsy, and found dozens that might help stop seizures in humans with further study.
He has also researched treatments for the chronic pain associated with diabetic neuropathy, cancers, and trigeminal neuralgia-all forms of pain where neurons have been damaged.
Two companies have been formed based on this research: one on prostate therapies and pain blockers, and the other on therapies for macular degeneration-a leading cause of blindness.
Dr. Brown has also been working with a large pharmaceutical company to evaluate 200 compounds that his lab discovered, and has discovered six compounds that show a great deal of promise. Sixteen patent disclosures have been filed on his work.
Dr. Brown will bring ten members of his research team from the University of Virginia with him to Georgetown.
"At Georgetown, I will be joining a really great faculty with superb basic science research skills and a strong collegiality," he said.
"My hope is to help develop drug discovery teams that are interdepartmental and interdisciplinary in cancer and neurosciences-two areas that have unmet clinical needs."
Dr. Brown was born in Baltimore in 1965, and received a B.S. degree at Oakwood College, a Ph.D. in organic chemistry at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and an M.D. at the University of Virginia.
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