John Donello, PhD

John Donello, Ph.D. serves as an Advisor of Translation at Gate Neurosciences. Dr. Donello was most recently Vice President, External Science & Innovation at Allergan/AbbVie and led R&D innovation efforts to develop strategic collaborations, in-license clinical stage assets, and evaluate M&A opportunities. Previously, he was Vice President of various research functions responsible for identifying new targets, technologies, and program development through Phase II.

Dr. Donello has over 25 years of pharmaceutical industry experience in drug discovery and drug development. John is an inventor of over 130 granted US patents and has overseen the discovery, IND filing, and clinical development of  more than 12 clinical candidates in pain, cognition, depression, and a range of ophthalmic and dermatologic diseases. John has led multiple international scientific collaborations, acquisition integrations, and in-licensed and out-licensed numerous drug programs. John led global development of zelquisitinel and, working in concert with industry and academic partners, his research group demonstrated rapastinel and zelquistinel act through a novel NMDAR modulatory site to enhance synaptic plasticity and symptoms of depression. He sits on University of California, Irvine Director’s Advisory Committee for the Center of Translational Vision Research.

Dr. Donello performed his thesis work at The Salk Institute and received his PhD in Biology from the University of California, San Diego.  He earned a Bachelor of Science, Honors in Biology degree from Indiana University.

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