Mark Murcko, Ph.D. has directly contributed to seven marketed drugs and several others currently in mid-stage clinical trials.
Mark is a Founder, Board member, and Chief Scientific Officer at Relay Therapeutics in Cambridge, MA. In addition, Mark holds the position of senior lecturer in the Department of Biological Engineering at MIT, and is a member of numerous scientific advisory boards and corporate boards of directors for a diverse range of organizations.
Until November 2011, Mark was chief technology officer and chair of the scientific advisory board of Vertex Pharmaceuticals. In this role, he was responsible for the identification, validation and incorporation of disruptive technologies across global R&D. Mark is a co-inventor of the HCV protease inhibitor Incivek (telaprevir), as well as Agenerase (amprenavir) and Lexiva (fosamprenavir), Vertex’s two marketed drugs for the treatment of HIV. In addition, he guided the early efforts of the Vertex’s cystic fibrosis program that later produced the marketed drugs Kalydeco (ivacaftor) and Orkambi (lumacaftor / ivacaftor). He is also a co-inventor of eight other clinical candidates in the areas of cancer, inflammation/ immunology and infectious disease, and was responsible for starting many of Vertex’s programs in these and other disease areas, notably leading to VX-787 (JNJ-872; Pimodivir) for influenza and VX-970, an ATR inhibitor for cancer, both currently in mid-stage clinical trials.
Prior to Vertex, Mark worked at Merck Sharpe & Dohme, where he helped discover clinical candidates against infectious, cardiovascular and ocular diseases, including inhibitors of the enzyme carbonic anhydrase for the treatment of glaucoma. One of Merck’s development candidates in this area, dorzolamide, was commercialized in two products, Trusopt and the combination medicine Cosopt (dorzolamide / timolol). Trusopt was the first marketed drug in pharmaceutical history to result from a structure-based drug design program.
He served as the chair of the 2013 Gordon Research Conference in Medicinal Chemistry and is currently a member of the Board of Trustees of the GRC. He is a co-inventor on more than 50 issued and pending patents and has co-authored more than 85 scientific articles (H-index=50). Mark holds a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from Yale University and a B.S., summa cum laude, in chemistry and applied mathematics from Fairfield University.