Fiona McPhee, PhD

A D.Phil. in Organic Chemistry was awarded at Oxford University, England, for the design and synthesis of analogs of the phosphoinositide pathway and assessment of their impact on the mechanism of phosphorylation of phospholipase C. My first post-doctoral position was at the Max Plank Institute for Biochemistry (Martinsried, Germany), learning molecular and cellular virology techniques to identify and characterize antigenic sites of coxsackie B viruses. My second post-doctoral position was at the University of California, San Francisco where molecular modeling was used to identify dominant negative mutants of the HIV protease to produce a viral macromolecular inhibitor. These studies were subsequently taken up by Chiron as a preclinical project and kindled a desire to work in drug discovery. Over 15 years has been spent in the Department of Virology at Bristol-Myers Squibb. Main areas of focus have included drug discovery efforts in HCV where I initiated and led a structure-based design approach to identify inhibitors of the HCV NS3 protease. These efforts resulted in the identification of a number of clinical candidates; this includes asunaprevir which is in late stage clinical development. Current responsibilities include heading up the Virology Translational Research and Development team at BMS and supporting virology clinical programs.