Significant research contributions made in the area of Organic Chemistry, Chemical Biology and Medicinal Chemistry
(Citation by Indian National Science Academy, New Delhi)

Prof. Iqbal has contributed significantly in the area of catalysis in organic synthesis and total synthesis of natural products. His seminal contribution using cobalt catalyzed reactions in organic synthesis has made great impact as new synthetic methodology. He was able to invent new catalysts based on cobalt and demonstrated their utility in oxidation reaction using molecular oxygen. The cobalt catalyzed epoxidation of alkenes have found widespread utility in organic chemistry. His other significant contribution is in the area of drug discovery where he has worked extensively on peptidomimetics as novel therapeutic agents.

He has designed novel chemical entities based on the mimicking of protein motifs by designing small cyclic peptides having b-turns or helical structures. He has contributed a great deal in discovering new drugs in the area of diabetes, cancer and infectious diseases. Four of the new drugs discovered by his group at Dr. Reddy’s laboratories (DRL) is undergoing phase I clinical trials in Canada and UK. One of the anti-diabetic drug discovered by him has already completed phase I clinical trial and is now entering in phase II soon. He has discovered these drugs using the cutting edge technology like structure based drug design using X-ray crystal structure of the target protein with the drug design by his group at DRL. His research group at Dr. Reddy’s was actively involved in combating cancer by discovering new drugs which can cure cancer without any side effects. They were using the approach of inhibiting cancer by disrupting the cell cycle involved in the growth and proliferation of cells. His contribution to human health is truly noteworthy and he is leading a large group of scientists who are committed to this cause.

The following drugs were discovered by Prof Iqbal and his research group at DRL.

  • Sl. No.
  • Drugs
  • Therapeutic Use (Target)
  • Companies
  • Remarks
  • 1
  • DRF 16536
  • Antidiabetic (AMPK)
  • DRL
  • Phase I clinical trial
  • 2
  • DRL 10945
  • Antidiabetic and Dyslipidemia (PPAR α)
  • DRL
  • Phase I clinical trial completed
  • 3
  • DRL 11605
  • Antidiabetic (PPAR α & δ)
  • DRL
  • In Phase I clinical trial
  • 4
  • DRL 12424
  • Anti-atherosclerosis (CETP)
  • DRL
  • In Phase I clinical trial