Javed Iqbal earned his PhD degree (1977) from Delhi University after which he joined Cambridge University as a SERC post-doctoral Fellow and worked on organosilicon chemistry in the group of Ian Fleming (1978-82). Subsequently he moved to Oxford University and worked as post-doctoral Fellow with JE Baldwin (1983-84) on penicillin biosynthesis and later on with RJP Coreau as a Visiting Fellow at the University of Montpellier (1983-84). He was a Professor at IIT Kanpur (1984-99) and subsequently moved to Dr Reddy's Laboratories Ltd (DRL) where he served as Distinguished Research Scientist and Head, Discovery Chemistry (2000-07). He served as Director of Regional Research Laboratory (CSIR), Trivandrum (2002) and was Visiting Fellow at the University of Notre Dame, USA; University of Montpellier, France; and University of Okayama, Japan. Currently he is the Director of Institute of Life Sciences, Hyderabad.
Academic and Research Contributions: Iqbal has taught and trained several hundred students at IIT Kanpur and DRL. He has contributed significantly in the area of catalysis in organic synthesis and synthesis of natural products. His seminal contribution using cobalt-catalyzed reactions in organic synthesis has made great impact as new synthetic methodology. His research focused around development of new catalysts based on cobalt, leading to a versatile oxidation reaction using molecular oxygen. His other significant contribution is in the area of drug discovery where he has done extensives work on peptidomimetics as novel therapeutic agents. His group also worked on mimics of protein motifs by synthesizing small cyclic peptides having beta-turns or helical structures and contributed significantly on new drug discovery in the area of diabetes, cancer and infectious diseases. Two of the drugs discovered by his group are undergoing phase-I clinical trials in Canada and UK. He has published more than 200 research papers and has filed 45 patents in his area of research. Iqbal has mentored a number of research students including 25 PhDs.
Other Contributions: As Director of Institute of Life Sciences, Hyderabad, Iqbal pursues cutting edge science at the interface of life sciences and chemistry. He has established a strong drug discovery research team to work in the area of TB and diabetes. He was also instrumental in setting up a state-of-the-art research facility in medicinal chemistry at DRL. He served as a Council Member of INSA (2003-05) and as Member of IUPAC committee on Chemistry and Drugs (2006-09). He has also served as Member of the International Advisory Committee of the journal Chem Med Chem published by Wiley.
Awards and Honours: Professor Iqbal is a Fellow of Indian Academy of Sciences, Bangalore (1995). He was conferred on Vigyan Gaurav Award by UP Government (2006).