Scientific Advisory Board

Professor Chris Abell FRS FMedSci FRSC


Professor Abell is in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Cambridge, where his research applies inter-disciplinary approaches to solving challenges in biological chemistry. His research is primarily focused in two areas: developing picodroplets as an experimental platform, and pioneering new approaches to drug discovery. He was a co-Founder of Sphere Fluidics Limited.

Professor Abell also co-Founded Astex Therapeutics, the leading company in the area of fragment-based drug discovery. In 2013, Astex was acquired by Otsuka Pharmaceuticals for circa £570 million. In 2013, Professor Abell also co-Founded Aqdot, a company developing innovative encapsulation technology.

Professor Abell is a Fellow of the Royal Society, the Royal Society of Chemistry and the Academy of Medical Sciences and is currently Pro Vice-Chancellor of Research at the University of Cambridge.

Professor Wilhelm Huck


Professor Huck, formerly at the University of Cambridge, is now in the Institute for Molecules and Materials at Radboud University, Nijmegen, the Netherlands, where his research focuses on understanding complex molecular systems with a view to ultimately construct a living cell. His research uses picodroplets as an experimental platform for studying physical aspects of cellular organization and as a tool for high throughput single cell studies. He was a co-founder of Sphere Fluidics.

In 2015 Professor Huck co-founded Cytofind Diagnostics, a company developing a new route for detection and isolation of Circulating Tumour Cells.

Professor Huck is a Fellow of the Royal Dutch Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Dr Tristan Vaughan


Dr Vaughan is a Vice President, R&D, Antibody Discovery and Protein Engineering at Astra-Zeneca. He leads a team of 120 scientists, directing the discovery and engineering for around half of the company’s biologics portfolio. Dr Vaughan joined MedImmune (formerly Cambridge Antibody Technology, CAT) in 1993 and previously held a number of roles in the organization, playing a key role in the development of its world-leading platform technology to build the first human antibody libraries of 1010 members.

He was integral to the success of the CAT-AstraZeneca strategic alliance (which preceded AstraZeneca’s acquisition of CAT) and led a number of CAT’s ‘milestone and royalty’ based alliances. He helped to discover Benylsta(r) and is a key inventor of Humira(r). Prior to joining CAT, Dr Vaughan was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Toronto and a graduate of the University of Leeds Genetics Department. He has authored over 70 publications in peer-reviewed journals.