13th SAPA-NE Conference – Drug Discovery and Development

Recently, I attended the 13th SAPA-NE (Sino-American Pharmaceutical Professionals Association – New England) Annual Conference.

The conference, which focused on science and innovation for optimal R&D in discovery chemistry and biology, was held at Massachussetts Institute of Technology (MIT) on May 21, 2011.

As the Boston area has a number of scientists working in drug discovery and development, Cambridge was an optimal location for the event.  There were about 400 to 450 biologists and chemists in attendance.  Attendees were from academia, local pharmaceutical/biopharmaceutical companies, big US pharmaceutical companies, and China.

Presentations were given by executives from large pharmaceutical companies, including Millenium, Novartis, Pfizer and Shire.  One presentation – Towards the Design and Synthesis of an Artificial Cell – was given by a 2009 Nobel Laureate, Harvard Professor Jack W. Szostak. 

Currently, SAPA organizes meetings in five locations: Boston, New Jersey, Philadelphia, San Francisco and China.