I am Benjamin Kingsley Harley, a recent PhD graduate from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana looking forward to a career in Academia and Research at the University of Health and Allied Sciences, Ho also in Ghana. My area of expertise is natural product chemistry.
Over the years, natural products chemists and pharmacognocists in Ghana have identified and isolated bioactive compounds from natural sources including plants and microbes that are active against some diseases that affect its citizens but have not been able to develop these chemical entities into drug candidates due to lack of expertise in drug discovery researches. My goal in coming to WCAIR is obtain an overview of drug discovery process, acquire requisite knowledge and skills that can be translated to our natural product research to initiate drug development campaigns that can drive these chemical entities through the drug discovery process.
Here in WCAIR, I am embedded in one of their drug discovery campaigns, focusing on tuberculosis, as a member of the medicinal chemistry team. With the help of the other chemists, I have been able to synthesize my first few small molecules using various synthetic routes and I am very excited about that. I look forward to learning more medicinal chemistry with hopes of applying them to natural products.