Alexander Pym, PhD

Alexander Pym, PhD

Director, Infectious Disease, Wellcome

With an extensive background in molecular microbiology and translational medicine, Alexander leads Wellcome’s work on infectious disease, supporting research into ways to reduce the risks and impacts of infectious disease globally.

Previously, Alexander was the Senior Director in Global Public Health Research and Development, at the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson, where he led the discovery and development of new drugs for tuberculosis (TB) and related diseases. His research career has focused on developing and evaluating new treatments for TB and HIV in low-, middle- and high-income countries.

Alexander spent his early career working as a doctor in rural South Africa, where he led the district TB control program and launched the hospital’s first voluntary HIV testing programme.

He also worked on some of the first clinical trials of triple therapy for HIV in London before completing a PhD in Molecular Microbiology at the Institut Pasteur in Paris, supported by a Wellcome Research Fellowship. He went on to spend over a decade in South Africa working initially on clinical drug development at the South African Medical Research Council, including for bedaquiline, the first new drug for TB in 40 years.