Didier Leroy

Senior Director, Drug Discovery
Research & Development

What I do at MMV:

As Director, Drug Discovery, my role is to lead the biology, parasitology and preclinical pharmacology to ensure that MMV benefits from optimal test cascades through which the most promising next generation of antimalarials can be identified. I lead up to 13 projects in collaboration with first class academic and industry partners to help the antimalarial community align with the malaria eradication agenda. I also provide support to clinical development by integrating research tools and strategies across the whole R&D team.

Why I work at MMV:

My dream has always been to contribute to the success of scientific research by seeing a drug candidate reach patients. At MMV, I have a chance to make this dream a reality, which  adds another dimension to my daily job. It is exciting to see how much researchers and clinicians can learn from each other. This happens on a regular basis at MMV and is the source of inexhaustible motivation for me.

More about me:

I’m a molecular pharmacologist/biologist in drug discovery, with a PhD in Molecular Biology from the University J. Fourier of Grenoble in France. I joined MMV’s Drug Discovery Team from Merck-Serono International, where I led a team and several projects in the Lead Discovery Department. I gained broad experience in drug discovery and disease biology (cancer, inflammation and neurological disorders) and I’ve worked in the various phases of a project: target characterization, lead identification and optimization, molecular and cellular pharmacology, druggability evaluation and cellular biology/biochemistry. I have published scientific articles in the field of cancer/inflammation mainly on signal transduction, chromatin and DNA processing enzymes and more recently on malaria.

Ask me about:

Outside of MMV, during the last ten years, I have served on the reviewer/advisory panel of several governmental, national and international organizations such as The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, PATH (MVI), INSERM, Institut Pasteur (France), Institut Pasteur Korea, EU 7th framework programme. I also review manuscripts on a regular basis for the editorial board of various scientific journals. Last but not least, I am the happy and proud dad of two daughters both practicing gymnastics and preparing the selection for the French championship. My passion is to travel with my wife and my daughters with the goal to discover new cultures and to meet new people.