Drug Discovery in the Natural World: Venoms as Drugs and Antidotes for Envenoming

16 June, 2022 - 16 June, 2022


In this "Things You Need to Know" series on emerging technologies, we will learn from prominent scientists, entrepreneurs, and investors about their successes, struggles, and the things they wished they knew before starting their journey.

"Drug Discovery in the Natural World: Venoms as Drugs and Antidotes for Envenoming"

Webinar description: We will explore the career pathways and research activities of Steve Trim (CEO and founder of Venomtech) and Nicholas Casewell (Professor of Tropical Disease biology). The discussion will cover the development and application of new approaches to develop antivenoms for treating snakebite and also how to use venom and toxin-derived compounds to stimulate novel drug discovery. We will further discuss the medical need, business drivers, collaborative initiatives and future opportunities in this developing research area.

Prof. Nick Casewell is Director of the Centre for Snakebite Research & Interventions (CSRI) at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM) in the UK. He trained as a molecular biologist during his PhD studies at Bangor University where he characterised the venom composition of medically important snakes. Thereafter he moved to industry to work for the antivenom manufacturer MicroPharm, before returning to academia on a Natural Environment Research Council Fellowship studying the origin and evolution of animal venoms. In 2014, Nick moved to LSTM, and in 2015 was awarded a Sir Henry Dale Fellowship by Wellcome to investigate new approaches to develop antivenoms for treating tropical snakebite. Nick’s research has since focused predominately on translational activities, mostly relating to utilising knowledge gained from venom toxin characterisation research for the discovery and development of novel ‘next-generation’ snakebite therapeutics. Nick was appointed as Professor in Tropical Disease Biology at LSTM in 2019 and the following year was appointed as director of CSRI, an LSTM research centre comprised of 25 researchers focused on alleviating the impact of snakebite on tropical communities via biomedical, clinical and public health research activities.

Steve Trim is the founder and Chief Scientific Officer at Venomtech Ltd, a UK biotech company set up initially to provide assay ready venom fraction libraries for drug discovery. He started his drug discovery career with 10 years as a molecular biologist, biochemist and safety delegate at Pfizer global research and development, Sandwich. The majority of this time was working in pain and neuroscience on tough ion channel targets. Steve took this in depth drug discovery expertise to solve a key problem, that of finding good, selective, ion channel drugs using venom peptides. He set up Venomtech in 2010 to do just that with the UK’s only commercial venom laboratory. He’s won awards for animal welfare, a patent for safe methods of feeding venomous snakes and in 2013 the ELRIG technology prize for launching the first 384-well acoustically dispensable venom library. Steve received chartered biologist status from the Royal Society of Biology in 2016, is Chair of the Veterinary Invertebrate Society and an ELRIG committee member. Steve continues to lead the science at Venomtech and published several papers on venoms in drug discovery, invited book chapter for Progress in Medicinal Chemistry and has successfully screened venoms in 384 well automated patch clamp and time resolved fluorescence assays.

This Seminar series is hosted by the Academic Drug Discovery Consortium (ADDC). The ADDC is a professional society dedicated to building the community of academic drug discovery labs and the companies, universities, and government agencies that support and partner with these centers.

Registration Webpage

Registration Deadline: 2022 June 16

Contact Name: Karen Gottlieb

Contact E-mail: manager@addconsortium.org

Contact Number: 3056615581

Organization Website

Organizer: Academic Drug Discovery Consortium

Event Website

Cost Range: N/A

Event Sponsors: MedChem Express


United States