“Educating global science students while they help discover drugs for neglected diseases” – William Scott @ Cafe Inquiry

PUBLIC LECTURE, April 20th, 7pm CENTER FOR INQUIRY, DOWNTOWN INDIANAPOLISCafe Inquiry: William Scott, Educating global science students while they help discover drugs for neglected diseases April 20th 2016

CINSO and the Center for Inquiry of Indiana co-host the monthly lecture series “Cafe Inquiry.”



Not enough research is done to find drugs for many “neglected” diseases. The affected populations are either too small or too poor to provide a financial incentive for drug discovery. At the same time, students often are taught science, both in the classroom and the laboratory, without an immediate connection to an important real life application. This talk will present a program developed at IUPUI, called Distributed Drug Discovery (D3), that addresses both these challenges. It teaches students the multiple disciplines required for drug discovery while they apply their learning, in the laboratory, to make and test potential drugs for neglected diseases. The “distributed” power of the program comes from the participation of multiple students from a developing network of schools in the US, Cuba, Eastern Europe, China and Kenya.


Speaker Biography:

Bill Scott is a Research Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at IUPUI. He obtained his bachelor’s degree from Williams College, his Ph.D. from UCLA, and did postdoctoral research in chemistry and biology at Rockefeller University and Caltech. He has extensive experience in both the pharmaceutical and academic environments. After a career in drug discovery research at Eli Lilly he joined IUPUI to pursue his passion of educating students while enlisting them to meet an important humanitarian need. He is doing this through the Distributed Drug Discovery (D3) project, which is being co-developed with Dr. Marty O’Donnell at IUPUI. At the center of D3 is the belief that undergraduate student learning is more effective when students clearly see the direct application of acquired knowledge to an important challenge, the discovery of drugs for neglected diseases.

Outside of work Bill enjoys “distributed” food growth: helping create and maintain community gardens.