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Serial Academic Inventor

September, 2012

Prof. Tim Foster, B.A., Ph.D.(BRIST.), S.F.T.C.D-

is Professor of Molecular Microbiology and Director of Postgraduate Teaching and Learning in Microbiology. He is world-renowned for his pioneering research on Staphylococcus aureus, a bacterium that can cause serious infections in humans and farm animals, and is notorious for being resistant to many antibiotics (MRSA). By studying proteins from the bacterial cell surface he tries to understand the mechanisms that allow the bacterium to colonize human skin as well as occasionally to cause invasive disease. His excellence in research has afforded him inventorship on multiple patent portfolios, many of which are currently licensed to multi-national companies for both animal and human vaccine development. Much of Tim’s early work on S. aureus binding proteins is patent protected, with many patents granted internationally. This patent portfolio has been licensed to Inhibitex/Pfizer for development. In recent years, a novel protein, patent protected in numerous countries, has been licensed for development by a major international pharmaceutical company as a vaccine to combat S.aureus infections. This licence deal has brought in revenue of over €350,000 to Trinity College and the inventors to date. Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health, the European market leader in equine vaccines, has developed EQUILIS® StrepE, the only strangles vaccine for horses in Europe. The key component of the vaccine was developed by the Foster lab and is licensed to Intervet.