NIH Sponsored Investigator Dr. David Kingston from Virginia Tech Gains Access to the Formerly Private Merck Natural Products Collection
The Natural Products Discovery Institute (NPDI) has signed its first major deal to allow qualified researchers to access the formerly private Merck Natural Products Collection that it received as a donation this past summer. Dr. David Kingston, University Distinguished Professor of Chemistry at Virginia Tech, was funded by a grant from the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) of the National Institutes of Health to be the first outside researcher to gain access to this world-class collection of plant natural products.
NPDI has signed an agreement with Virginia Tech that will allow the screening of thousands of its samples by the Kingston group in search of novel anti-cancer and anti-malarial agents. “I am delighted to be able to work with this superb collection and look forward to discovering new bioactive compounds,” said Kingston.
The NPDI was established in June 2011 as a result of an unprecedented gift by Merck and Company of its entire U.S. Natural Products Library and the Schering-Plough Legacy Culture Collection to the Hepatitis B Foundation’s research affiliate, the Institute for Hepatitis and Virus Research. Together, this is one of the largest, most diverse, and most carefully developed natural products collections in the world.
“I’m gratified that we are bringing new life to this priceless natural products collection by initiating our first collaborative project with Dr. Kingston,” said Dr. Michael Goetz. Dr. Goetz is leading the NPDI and its team of researchers, who are experienced with the microbiology, chemistry and curatorship of this collection.