Newswise — La Jolla, Calif., August 18, 2016 — Christopher J. Larson, Ph.D., is joining the Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP) as vice president of Drug Discovery and adjunct associate professor. Under Senior Vice President Michael Jackson, Ph.D., Larson will provide operational and scientific oversight of the Conrad Prebys Center for Chemical Genomics and serve as SBP’s Scientific Coordinator for NCI’s Chemical Biology Consortium (NCI-CBC).

Before joining SBP, Larson spent six years at Takeda Pharmaceuticals, where he advanced numerous candidate drugs from research to global clinical development. His most recent position at Takeda was US head and associate global head of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases drug discovery, expanding the company’s research enterprise into several new disease areas.

Earlier in his career, Larson helped launch Karus Therapeutics, a biotechnology company based in Southampton, England, that focused on two innovative classes of small molecule cancer drugs. Prior to that, he led discovery research projects and oversaw translation of the first clinical program at Kemia, Inc., a small biotech in San Diego.

Larson earned his Ph.D. in chemistry at Harvard University and did postdoctoral research at the Salk Institute.

# # # #About SBPSanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP) is an independent nonprofit medical research organization that conducts world-class, collaborative, biological research and translates its discoveries for the benefit of patients. SBP focuses its research on cancer, immunity, neurodegeneration, metabolic disorders and rare children’s diseases. The Institute invests in talent, technology and partnerships to accelerate the translation of laboratory discoveries that will have the greatest impact on patients. Recognized for its world-class NCI-designated Cancer Center and the Conrad Prebys Center for Chemical Genomics, SBP employs about 1,100 scientists and staff in San Diego (La Jolla), Calif., and Orlando (Lake Nona), Fla. For more information, visit us at or on Facebook at and on Twitter @SBPdiscovery.