Kalexsyn was formed in 2003 following the closure of Discovery Research operations at Pharmacia in Kalamazoo. Kalexsyn’s co-founders, Dr. Robert Gadwood and David Zimmermann had worked with numerous CROs worldwide while at Pharmacia. Based on their client experiences they identified three clear areas that CROs often failed to deliver to their clients:
- True medicinal chemistry experience, not synthetic chemists that have made a biologically active molecule
- Scientists that have the experience to solve complex synthetic problems
- The ability to effectively communicate and collaborate with a pharma partner
The scientists at Kalexsyn are extremely experienced in practicing the art of medicinal chemistry.
Mr. Zimmermann has worked in the life science industry for over a quarter century. Following a 23 year career at The Upjohn Company, Pharmacia and Upjohn, and Pharmacia he co-founded Kalexsyn, Inc. where he has served as Chief Executive Officer. Under his leadership, Kalexsyn has maintained a steady and rapid growth in a challenging economic environment. Revenue growth for Kalexsyn has far outpaced expectations with the successful partnering of Kalexsyn with companies both in the US and in Europe. Kalexsyn provides early drug discovery lead optimization services to pharmaceutical and biotechnology partners. While at Pharmacia, Zimmermann was responsible for negotiations and management of outsourcing contracts, managing an operating and capital budget of $16.4 million annually as well as maintaining leadership roles on therapeutic program teams in both the infectious disease and CNS areas.
Dr. Robert Gadwood, President and Chief Scientific Officer
Bob Gadwood attended Marquette University from 1970-1974. He graduated summa cum laude with a BS in chemistry. Bob did his graduate work at the University of Wisconsin with Professor Edwin Vedejs where he worked on the synthesis of cytochalasin D. While at Wisconsin, Bob received an NSF predoctoral fellowship and a WARF fellowship. He received his Ph.D. in 1978. From Wisconsin, Bob traveled to University of Pittsburgh, where he was an NIH postdoctoral fellow. Bob did postdoctoral research on the total synthesis of quadrone for Professor Sam Danishefsky from 1978-1979. He did a second postdoctoral project with Professor Jules Rebek on the synthesis of novel crown ethers from 1979-1980.
In 1980, Bob took a position as Assistant Professor at Northwestern University. While at Northwestern, Bob worked on the total synthesis of cyclooctane-containing natural products and achieved the first total synthesis of poitediol.
In 1986, Bob left Northwestern to take a position as Senior Scientist at the Upjohn Company in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Over the next 17 years, Upjohn underwent a series of mergers to become Pharmacia and Upjohn, and then Pharmacia. In 2003, Pharmacia was acquired by Pfizer. At the time of the acquisition, Bob was an Associate Director of Medicinal Chemistry. While at Upjohn, Bob worked in a variety of areas including hair growth and antibacterials.
In 2003, Bob left Pfizer to co-found Kalexsyn and currently serves as its President and Chief Scientific Officer.