Dr. John Knight
John Knight gained a first class honors degree in chemistry at the University of Southampton, UK. John remained at Southampton to study for his PhD in synthetic methodology utilizing radical cyclisation and dipolar cyloaddition chemistry. After gaining his PhD, John moved to Columbia University, New York, USA where he worked as a NATO Postdoctoral Fellow with Professor Gilbert Stork. John returned to the UK in 1987 joining Glaxo Group Research (now GSK) as a medicinal chemist, where he remained for 4 years before moving to the process research and development department at Glaxo, where he remained for a further 3½ years. During his time at Glaxo, John worked on a number of projects and gained considerable plant experience (pilot and manufacturing). In 1994 John moved to Oxford Asymmetry (later changing its name to Evotec and most recently to Aptuit) when it had just 25 staff. John’s major role when first at Oxford Asymmetry was to work with a consultant project manager to design, build and commission a small pilot plant, whilst in parallel developing the chemistry PRD effort at Oxford Asymmetry. The plant was fully operational within 18 months, operating to a 24h/7d shift pattern. John continued to run the pilot plant for a further 3 years, during which time he had considerable input into the design of a second plant, which was completed and commissioned in 2000. After an 18-month period at a small pharmaceutical company, John returned to Oxford in 2000 (by now called Evotec) to head the PRD department. John remained in this position for 6.5 years, during which time he assisted in its expansion, established a team to perform polymorph and salt screening studies and established and maintained high standards of development expertise across the department. John has managed the chemical development and transfer of numerous NCE’s into the plant for clients and been involved in process validations. He joined Scientific Update in January 2008 as Scientific Director.