Dr Harren Jhoti OBE FMedSci FRS

Harren Jhoti is a structural biologist whose main interest has been rational drug design. He is President & CEO of Astex Pharmaceuticals in Cambridge, a biotech company he co-founded in 1999. He pioneered the development of Fragment-based drug discovery, an approach now widely used in pharmaceutical and academic drug discovery centres to discover new medicines.

Astex’s first drug, called Kisqali, which originated from a Novartis collaboration, was approved in 2017 for patients with metastatic breast cancer in the US and EU. In 2013 Astex was acquired by Otsuka Pharmaceuticals for $886m, and operates as a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Japanese company. Prior to Astex Harren was Head of Structural Biology at GlaxoWellcome (now GSK).

In 2018 Harren received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the BIA, the UK BioIndustry Association. He is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences, the Royal Society of Chemistry and the Royal Society of Biology. He was awarded the Prous Institute-Overton and Meyer Award by the European Federation for Medicinal Chemistry in 2012 and named by the Royal Society of Chemistry as World Entrepreneur of the Year for 2007.

Professional position

  • President and CEO, Astex Pharmaceuticals

Subject groups

  • Chemistry

    Chemistry, biological

  • Biochemistry and molecular cell biology

    Biochemistry and molecular biology, Biophysics and structural biology

  • Health and human sciences

    Molecular medicine

  • Other

    Science policy

Dr Harren Jhoti OBE FMedSci FRS
Elected 2018