Foundation for Neglected Disease Research


To be an excellent “Non-profit Research Organization” that will offer candidate drugs for Diseases of the Developing World.

To conduct innovative research, discover, develop, manufacture, sell novel chemical/biological agents of synthetic or natural origin, undertake clinical trials, make available and provide innovative, distinctive products, scientific services, consultancy and education that contribute to save and improve lives of human, animal and/or plant with a focus on global health diseases.

Our goal is to deliver a drug and/or diagnostic in the areas of Neglected Diseases

Dr. Shridhar Narayanan

Dr. Shridhar Narayanan, Director, FNDR has more than 12 years of drug discovery and development experience in the Indian pharmaceutical industry in various therapeutic areas. Shridhar holds a basic degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences, a PhD in Pharmacology from Ohio State University, and has post-doctoral experience in Neuro-pharmacology at the University of California, Los Angeles. Shridhar has been the Executive Vice President-Discovery Biology and Drug Development at Orchid Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals. In this role, Shridhar has been responsible for the design and implementation of the scientific and business strategy for drug discovery and development across therapeutic areas, managing a team of scientists in biology, DMPK, safety pharmacology, and regulatory toxicology and clinical development. Most recently, Shridhar was appointed Vice President and Head of Innovative Science for the Infection at AstraZeneca, India and led the discovery and development of 2 potential clinical candidates in TB and malaria.

Throughout his career, Shridhar has contributed to the Discovery and Development of 15 clinical candidates. He has also executed out-licensing deals with major pharma as well as in-licensing of candidates (NCE/NBE) which are in active development. This has generated revenues in excess of 100 million USD. Shridhar has been a member of joint research committees, academic and industry collaborations and has served as a Ph.D. guide. Shridhar is a scientific consultant and advisor to biotech companies and Research Institutions and holds Adjunct faculty position at Transdisciplinary University, Bangalore.

Dr. R.K.Shandil

Dr. R.K. Shandil is PhD in Immunology from the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh, India and brings a strong track record of scientific expertise in experimental parasitology, parasite immunology and hybridoma technology.

Dr.Shandil, Director, FNDR, served AstraZeneca India R&D, Bangalore, for 20 years in various scientific and managerial roles at Infection – innovative medicines group. Shandil was Head of DMPK & Animal Sciences and led multidisciplinary teams in biology, immunology and pharmacology. He played a central role in building microbiology, cell biology and Pharmacology based drug discovery platforms for infectious diseases.

He was instrumental in building and managing state of the art bio-safety laboratories, a Vivarium, and validating animal models of tuberculosis, malaria and serious bacterial infections, PKPD and Pharmacology at AstraZeneca R&D Bangalore. Shandil’s scientific leadership led to discovery and pre-clinical development of AZD 5847, an oxazolidinone class of compound that has now completed Phase 2a/EBA clinical trial in TB patients. He led pharmacology of several TB and malaria lead optimization (LO) programs. His most recent & significant contribution includes discovery of Azaindoles, a yet-another clinical candidate for TB [Shirude. P et.al. Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, 2014, 58:5325-31]. He holds/shares patents for discovery of AZD 5847 and Azaindole class of compounds for the treatment of tuberculosis. He has ~35 publications in peer reviewed national and international journals, a dozen of them in very prestigious drug discovery journals like Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, Tuberculosis and Science. Shandil is scientific consultant and advisor to biotech companies and Research Institutions and holds Adjunct faculty position at Transdisciplinary University, Bangalore.

Independent Directors

Dr. Suri Venkatachalam

Suri Venkatachalam is an entrepreneur, and former Chief Executive Officer and founder of Connexios Life Sciences, a Network Biology driven Drug Discovery and Development company. He has a Bachelor`s in Chemical Engineering, PhD in Condensed Matter Physics and post-doctoral research in Neuro-biology. Suri is an entrepreneur. His first venture was in agricultural biotechnology with a company he co-founded in 2000 called Metahelix. He is a founding director of Group Lifespring and also a co-founder of Achira Labs, a Bengaluru based start-up that is developing a unique microfluidics based technology platform for molecular diagnostic applications. Suri is deeply interested in Global Environmental History and its intersection with the broad discipline of World-History and is an Adjunct Faculty at the Nature Conservation Foundation.

Hema Krishnamurthy

Mrs.Hema Krishnamurthy, is a Chartered Accountant of the 1981 batch, with over 3 decades of experience in Industry, Teaching and Consultancy. She is a visiting faculty in IIM Bangalore, Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, and many other Institutes. She has conducted training programs for several Organizations in the field of Finance and Accounts. Her teaching experience spans over the last two decades and is a highly rated faculty. She has over 20 years experience in Consulting for a wide range of industries in the areas of Mergers, Acquisitions, Turn-Around, Strategy formulation, Corporate-finance, Management and Financial Accounting, Establishing systems and Mentoring Entrepreneurs. She has held senior executive positions in Corporates.

Scientific Advisory Board

FNDR has a scientific advisory board of leaders in the field of TB and malaria research to ensure that the overall deliverables of FNDR are in line with the global objectives for combating these diseases.


Astra Zeneca AB, Sweden has committed to provide the initial seed funding and essential laboratory equipment for starting FNDR.