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Roland Bürli has about 18 years of post-graduate experience in medicinal chemistry and preclinical drug discovery. In industry, he first worked in the anti-infective field at Genesoft, a startup Biotech in South San Francisco, and later joined Amgen (Thousand Oaks) where he led early and late-stage projects across various therapeutic areas (inflammation, CNS, haematology). In 2008, he joined BioFocus, a UK-based CRO, where he initiated and led several fully integrated research collaborations. He currently is project director in the Neuroscience unit at AstraZeneca/MedImmune. Roland studied chemistry and obtained his PhD at the ETH (Zürich) followed by postdoctoral work at Caltech (Pasadena). He has co-authored about 85 scientific publications and patents. Roland has a passion for all aspects of preclinical drug discovery; in particular, he emphasizes that early proof-of-concept studies aimed at target validation are performed with tool molecules that exhibit the right characteristics.