Our people


Arthur Roach Ph.D

Director of Research, Parkinson’s UK 


Before joining Parkinson's UK Arthur held several academic and industrial positions, most recently as Senior Director, Neurodegenerative Diseases Research at Serono (now Merck). He is also a founder and Head of the SAB of the Swiss-based biotech Chord Therapeutics.

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Professor David Dexter

Deputy Research Director,  Parkinson's UK

Professor in Neuropharmacology, with expertise in the pathophysiology of neurodegenerative conditions and drug development. David was previously Deputy Head, Division of Brain Sciences at Imperial College London. In 2002 he established the Parkinson’s UK Tissue Bank and served as the Scientific Director. 

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Shona Clegg

Clinical Studies Portfolio Manager, Parkinson's UK

As Clinical Studies Portfolio Manager, Shona manages the clinical trials side of the Parkinson's Virtual Biotech portfolio. Shona has developed a wealth of experience in CNS trials and brain imaging over the last 20 years in both academia and industry. She provides expertise in end to end services for clinical trials working with both pharmaceutical / biotech companies and investigator led trials from start up to close out. 

Janusz Kulagowski Ph.D

Drug Discovery Manager,  Parkinson's UK

Prior to taking on his current role as Drug Discovery Manager at Parkinson's UK, Jan spent 20 years working in neuroscience at Merck & Co. Jan also bring expertise of contract research from his position at Argenta Discovery.

Scientific Advisory Panel

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Alan Naylor Ph.D
Drug Discovery Advisory Panel member

Following a long career culminating as VP and Director of Medicinal Chemistry at GSK, Alan is now an independent drug discovery consultant. He is a co-inventor of Serevent (salmeterol), a marketed drug for use in asthma and COPD, and has been a member of several Wellcome Trust and CRUK committees.

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Michael Rowley Ph.D
Drug Discovery Advisory Panel member


Mike has held several senior positions at both Merck Sharp and Dohme (MSD) in the UK, Italy and Switzerland, and AstraZeneca in Sweden. He led teams which identified the marketed drugs Isentress (raltegravir) for HIV infection, Zapatier for HCV infection and niraparib for breast and ovarian cancer, which has been filed with regulatory authorities.


John Davis Ph.D
Drug Discovery Advisory Panel member


John has 20+ years of drug discovery expertise from target to phase IIa and has helped steer a dozen drug candidates into clinical development and to four positive proof of concepts. After his Ph.D and post-doctoral training, John joined GlaxoSmihKline. He left to form the spinout company Convergence Pharmaceuticals and later served as Director of Discovery for Selcia Ltd. and cofounded Cypralis Ltd. Since 2015 John has led the Alzheimer’s Research UK Drug Discovery Institute based at the University of Oxford.


Professor Manfred Auer

Drug Discovery Advisory Panel member

Manfred is currently the SULSA (Scottish Universities Life Sciences Alliance) Professor of Chemical & Translational Biology at the University of Edinburgh. He is one of the most experienced scientists in the field of a assay and screening methodologies and was previously Executive Director of Innovative Screening Technologies at the Novartis Institutes of Biomedical Research.

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Ann Hayes Ph.D
Drug Discovery Advisory Panel member


Following her Ph.D, Ann spent 22 years at Glaxo and was appointed Therapeutic Director for CNS diseases in 1995. In 2001, Ann set up as an independent consultant and has since co-founded 3 companies and sat on the board of several others.  She now consults for a number of companies and venture capitalists, alongside advising charitable organisations including Alzhemer's Research UK and the Wellcome Trust.

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Damian Crowther Ph.D FRCP
Drug Discovery Advisory Panel member

Having trained in clinical neurology in Oxford, Nottingham and Cambridge Damian previously lead a neuroscience research group at the Cambridge Institute for Medical Research and Department of Genetics, University of Cambridge. Damian moved to industry in 2015 becoming the Director, and Head of Early R&D, with AZ Neuroscience and has since become an Entrepreneur in Residence with three science-focussed Venture Capital companies.

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A career with a difference

At the Parkinson's Virtual Biotech, we're committed to changing the lives of people with Parkinson's.


To support our rapidy-expanding and diverse portfolio of projects, we're actively investing in our people. Our ambition is to deliver new treatments in years not decades.


If this sounds like something you are passionate about, find out how you can make a difference.