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About Us


Welcome To VTCDD

The Virginia Tech Center for Drug Discovery (VTCDD) is an interdisciplinary group committed to continuing the growth and advancing the stature of the existing drug discovery and development programs at Virginia Tech. We are committed to fostering a dynamic environment that enthusiastically promotes the recruitment and education of high quality students, actively initiates and conducts timely research at both the basic and applied levels, and vigorously pursues continuing education and economic growth through outreach activities with industry and government agencies.

VTCDD is led by a steering committee. Responsibilities of the committee include providing strategic direction, serving as a liaison with the university, coordinating VTCDD operations, overseeing finances, and working with intellectual property owners.

Our Goals

Provide a visible presence for Virginia Tech in the drug discovery and drug delivery areas

Facilitate and promote high impact collaborative research

Attract support from industry, foundations, and private donors

Provide basic drug screening services to aid the Virginia Tech research community in drug discovery

Facilitate and strengthen submission of major multi-PI funding applications to federal sponsors, private foundations, the State, and industrial firms or consortia

Attract high-quality graduate students in drug discovery and delivery research to Virginia Tech

Strengthen graduate and undergraduate active learning in drug discovery, development, and delivery research

photo of robert Gourdie and student in lab

Steering Committee

 Paul Carlier, Professor, Chemistry  (Director)

Rafael Davalos, L. Preston Wade Professor, Biomedical Engineering

Joe Falkinham, Emeritus Professor of Microbiology, Biological Sciences

Carla Finkielstein, Associate Professor, FBRI-VTC

David G.I. Kingston, Emeritus University Distinguished Professor, Chemistry

Pablo Sobrado, Professor, Biochemistry (Associate Director)

Abby Whittington, Associate Professor, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science & Engineering


External Advisory Committee

  • John S. Lazo, Ph.D.
    Harrison Distinguished Professor, Departments of Pharmacology & Chemistry,  and Associate Dean for Basic Research, University of Virginia School of Medicine. Dr. Lazo’s  primary research focus is on the mechanism of action of small molecules and on the fundamental biological role of protein tyrosine phosphatases.
  • Allen Reitz, Ph.D.
    Reitz is Foundation Distinguished Professor of the Institute for Hepatitis and Virus Research (IHVR). He has three decades of experience in the area of medicinal chemistry, including 26 years with Johnson & Johnson.
  • J. Paul Waymack, M.D., Sc.D.
    Dr. Paul Waymack, MD, ScD, is the chairman of the board and chief medical officer of Kitov Pharmaceuticals: a publicly traded biotechnology company.  Dr. Waymack also serves on the board of directors and the board of advisors of a number of other corporations.  He previously was an associate professor at the New Jersey School of Medicine and Dentistry and was a Medical Reviewer at the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.