Rick Keenan, Ph.D.

Rick Keenan has over 30 years experience in drug discovery including nine years as a drug discovery consultant working with biotech, venture capital, philanthropic groups and large pharmaceutical company clients in the US and India/China.  Rick brings a critical approach to scientific problem solving derived from an integrated understanding of the entire drug discovery and development process.  Over the course of his research career in medicinal chemistry, he has contributed directly to the discovery of numerous clinical development compounds from a variety of therapeutic areas, including two marketed drugs: the Angiotensin Receptor blocker Teveten and the PTO receptor agonist Promacta.

Rick has been directing research efforts at OptiKira since 2015.  Previously at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), Rick was a founding member and Vice-President of the Center of Excellence for External Drug Discovery (CEEDD) and part of the leadership team.  Rick also spearheaded open and collaborative approaches to industry-wide research on neglected tropical diseases and led the efforts to publish whole cell malaria screening data online.  He is listed as an inventor over thirty patents and has co-authored more than fifty research publications.  Rick obtained a Ph.D. in organic chemistry at Stanford University with Professor Paul Wender and earned a BS in Chemistry from the University of Pennsylvania.