Dave Matthews, Ph.D.

Senior Crystallography Advisor

Dave currently chairs the Scientific Advisory Committee and acts as one of a three-member Executive Committee involved in day-to-day grant and project operational decisions for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation supported “Structure guided Drug Discovery Consortium for Tuberculosis and Malaria.” He also served on the Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV) Expert Scientific Advisory Committee where he also mentored several MMV supported drug discovery projects in which x-ray structures of the therapeutic target protein were used to inform medicinal chemistry. In 1985 he became the scientific founder of Agouron Pharmaceuticals, a company that pioneered the use of protein structure to inform medicinal chemistry for drug discovery. Agouron discovered, developed, and commercialized Viracept, the leading first-generation HIV protease targeted drug for treating AIDS. Agouron was acquired by Pfizer, Inc. in 2000. Three other drugs discovered at Agouron prior to the Pfizer acquisition subsequently gained FDA approval. Prior to Agouron, Dave served as the lead researcher and first author on the Science magazine publication that described the first three-dimensional x-ray structure of a drug (methotrexate) bound to its biological target (dihydrofolate reductase).  He began his career at the University of California, San Diego, where he spent 15 years carrying out research on protein structure, enzyme mechanism of action, and the stereochemical basis of inhibitor and drug binding to proteins of chemotherapeutic interest.