The SSTI team has extensive working experience in the biotech/pharmaceutical industry. Our team has broad experience in medicinal chemistry, drug development and cancer biology to progress our programs into the clinical stages and beyond.
Darren Orton, Ph.D.
Dr. Darren Orton is the Director of Medicinal Chemistry at SSTI. He has over 20 years of experience in all phases of drug discovery and development. Prior to joining SSTI, he was at Vanderbilt University, where he specialized in early lead discovery, high-throughput screening and molecular modeling. At Albany Molecular Research, he was part of a team that collaborated with Bristol-Myers Squibb to take BMS708163 (a Gamma-Secretase inhibitor) into clinical trials. Dr. Orton received his Ph.D. degree at the University of Durham in organic chemistry, working on the synthesis of natural products. He completed an industrial placement year in medicinal chemistry at Sanofi in the United Kingdom.
Thomas Doundoulakis, Ph.D.
Dr. Thomas Doundoulakis is a Senior Principal Scientist at SSTI. His experience in medicinal chemistry includes all phases of preclinical drug development. Prior to joining SSTI, he worked at Sirrus Chemistry (formerly Bioformix). Dr. Doundoulakis received his Ph.D. degree from the University of Texas at Arlington in organic chemistry, exploring synthetic studies towards palau’amine and linker modified derivatives of bioactive molecules.
Dennis L. Fei, Ph.D.
Dr. Dennis Fei is a Senior Principal Scientist at SSTI. His research focused on elucidating the Shh signaling and the functions of novel oncogenes for tumor growth. Dr. Fei received his Ph.D. degree in Pharmacology and Toxicology at Dartmouth College, and completed his postdoctoral training at National Human Genome Research Institute and Weill Cornell Medicine.
Bin Li, Ph.D.
Dr. Bin Li is a Senior Principal Scientist at SSTI. His research focused on developing small molecule inhibitors for oncogenic cell signaling pathways, including Wnt signaling. Two of his publications were highlighted as cover articles by Science Signaling. Dr. Li received his Ph.D. degree at University of Science and Technology of China, and completed his postdoctoral training at University of Miami Medical School.
Will Guerrant, Ph.D.
Dr. Will Guerrant is a Senior Principal Scientist at SSTI. His research focused on identifying targetable oncogenic biology within the Hippo-YAP pathway as potential new therapeutics for many cancers. Dr. Guerrant has more than ten years’ experience with drug discovery and preclinical development. He received his Ph.D. degree in Chemistry and Biochemistry from the Georgia Institute of Technology, and completed his postdoctoral training at The Scripps Research Institute.
Matthew Knowe, Ph.D.
Dr. Matthew Knowe is a Principal Scientist at SSTI. He developed a novel organocatalyst for the enantioselective desymmetrization of carboxylic acids, and applied these methods towards improved synthesis of biologically relevant small molecules. He also prepared isotopically labeled sterols for use as internal standards in mass spectrometry to assay sterol stasis and metabolism. Dr. Knowe received his Ph.D. degree in Chemistry from Vanderbilt University in the areas of synthetic methodology, catalysis, and total synthesis, and completed his postdoctoral training at Vanderbilt University.
Samir Saleh, M.Sc.
Mr. Samir Saleh joined SSTI as a Chemist. He conducted isotopic labeling of drug analogs and metabolites for metabolic studies, and has over 40 years of experience in medicinal chemistry. Prior to SSTI, he was a Drug Discovery Scientist at Vanderbilt University specializing in the synthesis of small molecules with improved potency, PK properties, and in vivo efficacy. Mr. Saleh received his M.Sc. degree in Chemistry from the Middle Tennessee State University.