Epigenetic Innovation in Pharmacology

Saturday, April 01st 2023

23:16 – 23:16 (GMT)

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Epigenetics is the next frontier of genome science. Put simply: a change of phenotype without change in genotype; look at it more closely, and it opens a myriad of new avenues for research from evolutionary biology through physiology to pharmacology. But how far have we gone in our understanding of basic epigenetic processes and is epigenetics ready yet to revolutionise medicine?

On November 24th, the Innovation Forum will present "Epigenetic Innovation in Pharmacology", an event exploring the newest findings in the field of epigenetics, their potential, and the road to their successful application

An evening event including talks, a panel discussion, startup pitches, and a networking session.


Geoff Smith, PhD is a leader in genomics technologies and applications. Most recently, Geoff was Vice President at Illumina, where he served for over 10 years, having joined the company via the acquisition of Solexa. Geoff led the invention of many aspects of the core SBS sequencing technology and workflow and platforms such as the MiSeq and HiSeq, before going on to lead Technology Development globally, clinical Product Development for the RGH business unit, and site lead. Prior to Solexa, Geoff was head of research at Adprotech, a company he also joined from start-up. Geoff has a first degree and PhD from Cambridge University, and held postdoctoral research positions with HHMI at UT Southwestern, USA and MRC Cambridge, UK.

Will co-founded CellCentric, and was appointed Executive Chairman in September 2014.
Will gained his PhD in 1991, in Immunology and Virology sponsored by Unilever (UniPath), before holding a post-doctoral position at the National Institute of Biological Standards and Control (NIBSC). He went on to Procter & Gamble Healthcare, where he was responsible for clinical development in a number of therapeutic areas. He led and delivered programmes throughout Europe, the Americas, South Africa and China.
Will is also President and CEO of CTS Inc., a cancer imaging and therapeutic research business from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, and is also a Non-Executive Director of PlaqueTec Ltd, a cardiovascular business based at Papworth Hospital. In 2011 he was appointed by the Science Minister to the Council of the BBSRC, the UK’s leading funder of bioscience research. In 2012 Will was elected to the Board of the BioIndustry Association and sits on both the Executive and Audit Committees. He holds a Masters degree in Clinical Research as well as an MBA from London Business School.

Wolf Reik is the Head of the Epigenetics Programme at the Babraham Institute in Cambridge and its Associate Director. He is honorary Professor of Epigenetics at the University of Cambridge and Associate Faculty at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, where he is a founding member of the recently established Centre for Single Cell Genomics. He is a Member of EMBO, Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences, Fellow of the Royal Society, Member of the Academia Europaea, and a Thompson Reuter highly cited researcher. His research interests are in epigenetics, particularly in epigenetic reprogramming during mammalian development and its role in stem cell biology and inheritance.

Nessa Carey is a Visiting Professor at Imperial College and worked in epigenetic drug discovery for 10 years in biotech companies and at Pfizer. She is the editor of the 2015 volume 'Epigenetics and Drug Discovery' from the Royal Society of Chemistry and the author of the popular science books 'The Epigenetics Revolution and Junk DNA: A Journey Through The Dark Matter of the Genome'.

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