Margaret Brimble

Distinguished Professor, The University of Auckland

Distinguished Professor Dame Margaret Brimble, DNZM CNZM, FRSNZ leads a drug discovery programme in at the University of Auckland. Her medicinal chemistry research focuses on the synthesis antimicrobial and anticancer agents, anti-diabetes agents and peptides for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders. She discovered the drug trofinetide for Neuren Pharmaceticals that will be the first drug to treat Rett Syndrome. Trofinetide is New Zealand’s first successful drug and one of only a few to be discovered in an academic laboratory. Margaret’s lab has been licensed by Medsafe NZ to manufacture clinical grade peptides and Margaret is co-founder of the spin out company SAPVax that is developing therapeutic cancer vaccines.

Margaret is Director of Medicinal Chemistry and a member of the management committee of the Maurice Wilkins Centre for Molecular Biodiscovery. In 2012 she won the Rutherford Medal (NZ’s top science prize) and the Hector and MacDiarmid medals. She won the 2008 World Class New Zealander Award (Science) and the 2007 L’Oreal-UNESCO Women in Science laureate for Asia-Pacific. She is Chair of the Rutherford RSNZ, Vice-President of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry Organic and Biomolecular Division, a member of the European Union Research Council and a member of the Advisory Board of the International Society of Heterocyclic Chemistry.