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El Dr. Gorka Etxebarria (Photo: NBD)

Gorka Etxebarria, new Chief Scientific Officer of Nostrum Biodiscovery

Nostrum Biodiscovery (NBD) has appointed Dr. Gorka Etxebarria as new Chief Scientific Officer. Dr Etxebarria has a solid career linked to drug discovery projects in the pharmaceutical industry. His incorporation comes after the signing of Ezequiel Mas as new company CEO, to pilot a new stage of growth as a global provider of leading molecular simulation technologies applied to drug discovery and design.


Gorka Etxebarria has been named Chief Scientific Officer of the Nostrum Biodiscovery (NBD). He replaces Victor Guallar, co-founder of NBD, who held the position on an interim basis, remaining now in the organization in other strategic positions. This appointment comes two months after the incorporation of Ezequiel Mas as new company CEO to pilot a new stage of consolidation and international expansion of the company, chaired by Modesto Orozco.

NBD is a spin-off from the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona), the Barcelona Supercomputing Centre (BSC-CNS), the University of Barcelona (UB) and the Catalan Institution for Research and Advanced Studies (ICREA). The company is located at the Barcelona Science Park and the North Campus of the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC). 

After just three-and-a-half years, NBD is establishing a leading position in the global landscape of companies dedicated to bio-molecular simulations with drug discovery and enzyme engineering applications. Recent changes to its executive team aim to reinforce the future global strategic position of the company and consolidate its presence in the national and international markets.

“CSO’s position is key for Nostrum Biodiscovery since all our activity pivots to carry out services of the highest scientific quality and advance in the development of our own drug discovery projects. For this reason, the hiring of in Gorka is very encouraging, since it will give a much-needed boost to the entire project portfolio and accelerate investor interest”, says Ezequiel Mas, company CEO.

“I am excited to be a part of Nostrum Biodiscovery as it has an exciting project and immense growth potential. The company has a very strong platform based on cutting-edge molecular simulation technology in the industry, and is now set to consolidate a line of business that will allow the development of internal drug design projects. I am looking forward to contributing my knowledge and experience in the development of medicines, and I am convinced that very positive results will come out that will benefit the scientific community and society, “says Gorka Etxebarria.

Gorka Etxebarria

Gorka Etxebarria Jardí obtained the BSc of Chemistry in 2004, MSc in Organic Chemistry in 2005 and PhD in Medicinal Chemistry in 2010, all from the University of Barcelona. During this time, he gained experience on Organic Chemistry, new methodologies and transformations for organic synthesis of natural products and he developed broad interest for molecules with bioactive properties and their use as pharmaceuticals.

In 2011 he joined Almirall where he worked as a Medicinal Chemistry Scientist in the lead optimization of inhaled drugs for treatment of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. In 2012 he moved to Vertex Pharmaceuticals, Oxford (UK), where he worked as Medicinal Chemistry Scientist for 8 years. Gorka moved back to Barcelona where he started his new role as Nostrum Biodiscovery Chief Scientific Officer in June 202

Gorka has been involved in a variety of preclinical hit identification/validation, hit-to-lead and lead optimization programs delivering several clinical candidates in cancer and pain therapeutic areas. His expertise ranges from optimization of Pharmaceutical and DMPK properties, fragment and structure-based drug design, target-ligand molecular interactions, drug discovery computational tools, biology of protein kinases and ion channels, competitive intelligence (patent analysis and data mining), amongst others.

He has co-authored 9 publications in top tier peer-reviewed journals and is co-inventor of 5 international patent applications.

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