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Medicinal chemistry and drug discovery using peptides and fluorine chemistry

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Personal profile


Dr Coxon is Senior Lecturer in Medicinal Chemistry in EaStChem and the School of Chemistry. He is co-founder and Director of a Durham University peptide synthesis spin-out, Pepmotec Ltd and was awarded a prestigious Vice Chancellors Medal for Research and Scholarship (LJMU, 2019) for his research into new migraine treatments. He is a current panel member of the Royal Society of Chemistry Protein & Peptide Science Group and helps to organise the annual Early Stage Researchers’ meeting. 

Dr Coxon has previously held academic appointments at Heriot-Watt University (Associate Professor; 2019-2021), Liverpool John Moores University (Senior Lecturer; Oct 14 - Aug 19) and Durham University (Lecturer; Aug 2013 - Sept 2014). Prior to undertaking postdoctoral positions at Durham, he completed his PhD (2010) at the Northern Institute of Cancer Research, Newcastle University as part of the Cancer Research UK Medicinal Chemistry Training Programme.

Research Interests

The Coxon Lab

Our Lab uses synthetic organic chemistrypeptide chemistry and fluorine chemistry to solve complex biological problems. Our researchers work in the following areas of medicinal and biological chemistry:

1. Understanding and treating intermittent and progressive neurodegenerative and neurological diseases.

(A) The role of the calcitonin gene related peptide (CGRP) in migraine pathophysiology and the development of novel therapeutics for migraine.

Our research programme has taken the native hormone, CGRP, that plays a key role in migraine and developed synthetic derivatives that are competitive antagomnists of CGRP. We use a range of in cell and in vivo assays to demonstrate the biological activity of these agents and are working to make these deliverable via nasal administration to treat migraine.

Relevant publications:

Funding: Innovate UK/MRC Biomedical Catalyst Scheme

Check out our recent Application Note working with Teledyne Isco to develop flash purification of peptide-peptoid hybrids.



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