Meet our symposium speakers who specialise in different areas of antimicrobial resistance

Professor Dame Sally Davies | UK Special Envoy on Antimicrobial Resistance

Dame Sally Davies was appointed as the UK Government’s Special Envoy on AMR in 2019. She is also the 40th Master of Trinity College, Cambridge University. 

Dame Sally was the Chief Medical Officer for England and Senior Medical Advisor to the UK Government from 2011-2019. She is a leading figure in global health, having served as a member of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Executive Board 2014-2016, and as co-convener of the United Nations Inter-Agency Co-ordination Group (IACG) on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR), reporting in 2019. In November 2020, Dame Sally was announced as a member of the new UN Global Leaders Group on AMR, serving alongside Heads of State, Ministers and prominent figures from around the world to advocate for action on AMR.

In the 2020 New Year Honours, Dame Sally became the second woman (and the first outside the Royal family) to be appointed Dame Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath (GCB) for services to public health and research, having received her DBE in 2009.

Professor Mike Barrett | University of Glasgow

Professor Mike Barrett is a Professor of Parasitology at the University of Glasgow.  He has a long-standing interest in antimicrobial drugs and, in particular, understanding the mechanisms of drug resistance.  His team has discovered mechanisms underlying resistance to multiple anti-parasitic drugs used in both human and veterinary medicine. He serves on several international boards, including the World Health Organisation’s expert committee in human African trypanosomiasis and the scientific advisory committee of the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative. 

In addition to his research work he also takes a proactive role in discussing science issues in the media, with infectious diseases and antimicrobial drugs topics of particular interest.

In 2021 Mike was awarded an OBE for his services to the NHS in helping establish the Lighthouse laboratory in Glasgow during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Professor Mark Woolhouse | University of Edinburgh

Mark Woolhouse is Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology at the University of Edinburgh. He studied biology at the Universities of Oxford and York and Queen’s in Canada, then held Research Fellowships at the University of Zimbabwe, Imperial College London and Oxford, before moving to Edinburgh in 1997. His research interests concern the population dynamics of pathogens at the human-animal interface, especially antimicrobial resistant bacteria, applying ecological and genomic approaches to understanding the link between resistance in human and animal populations. He advises governments and national and international agencies on the control of infectious diseases.

Mark was awarded an OBE in 2002 and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, the Academy of Medical Sciences and the African Academy of Sciences.

Matt Ronsheim, PhD | Innoviva Specialty Therapeutics

Matt Ronsheim, PhD, is a proven biopharmaceutical leader with more than 20 years’ experience bringing innovative medicines from discovery and clinical development through global regulatory filings and commercial launch and supply. He is currently Chief Technical Officer and a member of the executive leadership team at Innoviva Specialty Therapeutics, overseeing all pharmaceutical sciences and operations, manufacturing, and research.  Matt joined Entasis Therapeutics in 2019 as Vice President and Head of Chemistry, Manufacturing & Controls (CMC) and after roles of increasing responsibility, most recently served as Interim President of Entasis Therapeutics, which was acquired and integrated into Innoviva Specialty Therapeutics.

Matt has created and led teams in pharmaceutical development, chemistry, manufacturing, and supply chain to deliver new therapies across a variety of disease areas, including anti-infectives, CNS, and GI. Throughout a career spanning positions at Enanta Pharmaceuticals, Merck/Cubist and Forest Laboratories, he created organizations and capabilities to enable the development and delivery of novel therapies to market.

Matt earned his PhD in Synthetic Organic Chemistry from the University of New Hampshire and a BS in Chemistry from Southern Connecticut State University.

Professor Laura Piddock | Global Antibiotic Research and Development Partnership

As GARDP’s Scientific Director, Laura leads the Discovery and Exploratory Research and Scientific Affairs programmes, including the REVIVE programme. She also contributes to GARDP’s Policy & Advocacy activities. Laura is also Emeritus Professor of Microbiology at the University of Birmingham, UK. 

Laura began her career in a hospital and successfully integrated this background with academic research to be at the forefront of antimicrobial research. She has published over 250 articles, six chapters in academic books and co-authored nine reports for the UK government or WHO. She has an H-index of 91. Laura has been involved in various Policy activities. She was the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy (BSAC) Chair in Public Engagement, and in this role was the Director of Antibiotic Action and led the secretariat of the UK All Party Parliamentary Group on Antibiotics from 2012 – 2017. Laura was a co-author of the first World Economic Forum report on AMR in 2013, and an expert adviser to the AMR review led by Lord Jim O’Neill.

Laura is an enthusiastic communicator about antibiotic resistance and the lack of new antibacterial treatments and has been interviewed, advised on, and appeared in, several documentaries for numerous global networks including BBC (One, Two, Four, Radio 2, Radio 4, Radio 5 Live. World), Al Jazeera, CNN, Channel 4 and Sky News.

Dr Rebecca McHugh | University of Glasgow

Dr Rebecca McHugh is a Post-Doctoral Research Associate in Professor Andrew Roe’s Group at the University of Glasgow. Her research focuses on the use of novel anti-virulence therapies to treat E. coli infections of the gut. Specifically, her work focuses on potential clinical applications of natural products which are derived from the soil-dwelling genus of Actinobacteria, Streptomyces. This has included investigating the mechanism of action and biosynthesis of natural products, as well as industrial strain optimization in collaboration with Glaxo Smith Klein.

Rebecca is involved with the Microbiology Society, sitting on both their Early Career Microbiologists’ Executive Committee and Industrial Engagement Panel. In 2022 she was awarded the society’s Infection Science Award for her work on the natural product virulence inhibitor, aurodox.

Professor Ashley Stevens | Focus IP Group, LLC

Ashley Stevens is President of The Focus IP Group which specializes in intellectual property matters and in this capacity he is a Consultant to the Combatting Antibiotic Resistance – Accelerator (CARB-X) program, which is run by Boston University.  Prior to this, for 15 years he led Boston University’s Office of Technology Transfer which spun out scores of companies based on the University’s research.  He was also Special Assistant to the Vice President for Research, having also served at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, a teaching affiliate of the Harvard Medical School.  He has taught in 31 countries in both developed and emerging economies.

Prior to entering the technology transfer profession he worked in the nascent biotechnology industry for ten years.

Dr. Stevens holds a Bachelor of Arts in Natural Sciences, a Master of Arts and a Doctor of Philosophy in Physical Chemistry from the University of Oxford.  He developed a great interest in the work that happened in Oxford in the late 1930s and 1940s that led to the development of penicillin as the first antibiotic.

Professor Darko Modun | University of Split

Darko Modun, MD, PhD is Professor at the Department of Basic and Clinical Pharmacology, University of Split School of Medicine. He is the Head of the Study of Pharmacy and Vice-Dean for the Study of Pharmacy at the University of Split School of Medicine. The field of his scientific work is pharmacology and pharmacotherapy in the broadest sense, from drug regulations to patient adherence. Due to his unique position as the Head of the Study of Pharmacy and also a physician, he is dedicated to better connecting physicians and pharmacists in order to improve patient care. He is the president of the Croatian Pharmacological Society and is co-author and co-editor of several textbooks in the field of Pharmacology. He received several national awards for his scientific and professional work. He is a member of the Medicines Committee of the Agency for Medicines and Medical Products in Croatia.