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Sarah Grimwood, Ph.D.

Executive Director, Head of Portfolio, Strategy & Operations

I am responsible for overseeing Rare Disease Research Unit (RDRU) Portfolio progression up to Phase 2 Clinical Proof of Concept and supporting the design of strategies and initiatives to maintain and grow a high-performing research unit.

From 2017 – 2020 I served as the RDRU Chief of Staff and my previous background includes 27 years of Neuroscience drug discovery experience from Merck and Pfizer. I obtained my PhD in Pharmacology from the University of Hertfordshire, UK, and have I published > 60 peer-reviewed articles. I have led multi-disciplinary laboratories and numerous cross-functional teams, including portfolio project teams from Exploratory to Phase 1 stages. From 2010-2016 I served on a National Institute of Health Drug Discovery for Aging, Neuropsychiatric and Neurologic Disorders, Small Business Review Panel.

I have a passion for mentoring and developing colleagues and I led the Pfizer Kendall Square Women's Leadership Network from 2016 - 2020. In 2015 I was recognized as a Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association (HBA) Rising Star, for leadership and significant scientific and business impact across Pfizer, and in 2018 I was presented with a Leadership Award from Women in the Enterprise of Science & Technology (WEST).


  1. Grimwood, S. and Hartig, P. (2009) Target Site Occupancy: Emerging Generalizations from Clinical and Preclinical Studies. Pharmacology and Therapeutics 122, 281-301.
  2. Finnema, S.J., Scheinin, M., Shahid, M., Lehto, J., Borroni, E., Bang-Andersen, B., Sallinen, J., Shahid, M., Wong, E., Farde, L., Halldin C., and Grimwood, S. (2015) Application of cross-species PET imaging to assess neurotransmitter release in brain. Psychopharmacology 232(21-22), 4129–4157.
  3. Davoren, J.E., Garnsey, M., Pettersen, B., Brodney, M.A., Edgerton, J.R., Fortin, J.P., Grimwood, S., Harris, A.R., Jenkinson, S., Kenakin, T., Lazzaro, J.T., Lee, C.W., Lotarski, S.M., Nottebaum, L., O'Neil, S.V., Popiolek, M., Ramsey, S., Steyn, S.J., Thorn, C.A., Zhang, L., Webb, D. (2017) Design and Synthesis of γ- and δ-Lactam M1 Positive Allosteric Modulators (PAMs): Convulsion and Cholinergic Toxicity of an M1-Selective PAM with Weak Agonist Activity. J Med Chem. 60(15): 6649-6663.
  4. Wager, T.T., Galatsis, P., Chandrasekaran, R.Y., Butler, T.W., Li, J., Zhang, L., Mente, S., Subramanyam, C., Liu, S., Doran, A.C., Chang, C., Fisher, K., Grimwood, S., Hedde, J.R., Marconi, M., Schildknegt, K. (2017) Identification and Profiling of a Selective and Brain Penetrant Radioligand for in Vivo Target Occupancy Measurement of Casein Kinase 1 (CK1) Inhibitors. ACS Chem Neurosci. 8(9): 1995-2004.


University of Hertfordshire, UK: Pharmacology, PhD, 1996
Hatfield Polytechnic, UK: Applied Biology, B.S., 1987

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Seng H Cheng, Ph.D.

Senior Vice President & Chief Scientific Officer, Rare Disease

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Katherine L Beaverson, M.S.

Executive Director, Patient Advocacy Lead

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Michael Binks, M.D.

Vice President, Clinical Research

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Christian Czech, PH.D.

Senior Director, Biology and Nice Site Lead

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Greg LaRosa, Ph.D.

Vice President, Head of Scientific Research

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Clark Pan, PH.D.

Vice President, Gene Therapy and Discovery Biology

Ken Rhodes, Ph.D.

Vice President, Rare Neurology and Discovery Biology