Management Team

Steve Webber


Chief Scientific Officer

Steve joined TopiVert in 2011 as Chief Scientific Officer with the additional responsibility for managing day to day company operations as well as leading the development of the company’s technology and pipeline. He is an Executive Director of TopiVert.

Steve has 18 years of experience working in all phases of drug discovery, from target identification through to Phase I clinical trials. He moved to TopiVert from his previous role as Senior Director of Drug Discovery at Almirall Pharma in Barcelona. Steve also held positions of increasing responsibility in Rhone-Poulenc Rorer and Aventis and was Vice President of Biology in the Respiratory CEDD in GlaxoSmithKline. 

Steve trained as a pharmacologist, with degrees from Portsmouth Polytechnic (BSc) and University College London (PhD), and is an author on over 100 peer-reviewed publications.

Ajay Duggal

MB ChB, MRCP, Dip Pharm Med

Chief Medical Officer

Ajay joined TopiVert in January 2015 to provide medical oversight on TopiVert's programs.

Ajay has 20 years of experience in drug development and has been involved in many successful global regulatory submissions and approvals for small molecules, biologics, peptides, polymers and anti-sense platforms, as well as taking compounds from bench to bedside. His broad experience spans all phases of drug development, organisational leadership and portfolio prioritisation and strategy. Ajay was previously VP and Global Therapy Area Head for General Medicine at Takeda, with leadership responsibility for clinical development activities across multiple therapy areas including GI, renal, bone, pain, urology and women’s health. Ajay has also held positions at Genzyme, Pfizer and Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS).

Ajay qualified from Sheffield University Medical School and subsequently gained MRCP and the Diploma in Pharmaceutical Medicine.

Matthew Fyfe


Head of Chemistry and Intellectual Property

Matthew joined TopiVert at its inception in 2011 to spearhead its medicinal chemistry, CMC and intellectual property activities.

He has 20 years of experience as a medicinal chemist and drug discoverer, having formerly held the position of Director of Drug Discovery at Oryzon in Barcelona and Director of Medicinal Chemistry at Prosidion in Oxford. Matthew successfully led multiple projects in different therapeutic areas that have been purchased by major pharma companies.

Matthew obtained degrees from the University of Glasgow (BSc), Columbia University (MA) and the University of Birmingham (PhD) prior to postdoctoral studies at UCLA. He is a Chartered Chemist, a Fellow of The Royal Society of Chemistry, an author of more than 40 peer-reviewed publications and an inventor on over 75 patent applications.

Adele Rowley


Chief Operating Officer

Adele joined TopiVert in October 2012 to direct preclinical development of the company’s advancing NSKIs. As the portfolio has successfully progressed into clinical development she has taken on further scientific and operational responsibilities including CMC and clinical supply management, strategic portfolio management and partner relations.

Adele has over 20 years of drug discovery experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry ranging from target discovery and validation to phase 2 clinical development. She was previously a co-founder of Cellzome in Cambridge, UK where she held the position of Director of Therapeutics until Cellzome was acquired by GSK in 2012. Prior to this she held roles of increasing responsibility in GSK R&D.

Adele has a degree in Biology from the University of Bath and received her PhD in from Dalhousie University in Canada before undertaking postdoctoral studies at Cancer Research UK. She has authored over 25 scientific publications and is an elected fellow of The Royal Society of Biology.

Mike Taylor


Head of Clinical Development

Mike joined TopiVert as Head of Clinical Development in August 2014 to lead TopiVert’s innovative clinical research programmes, including the TOP1288 Phase 1 study and proof of concept study in ulcerative colitis.  

Mike has over 25 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry having held roles of increasing responsibility leading successful drug development strategies from First in Human clinical trials to marketing authorisation. He was previously Managing Director of Sunovion Europe, the London based drug development subsidiary of a top 10 Japanese pharmaceutical company and prior to that was Head of Clinical Operations at Astra UK.

He has a Pharmacology PhD from the University of London and a Certificate in Company Direction awarded by the Institute of Directors.

Anuj Madhok


Chief Business Officer

Anuj joined TopiVert in November 2018. Anuj started his pharmaceutical career with EUSA Pharma in 2009 where he headed up corporate development until the sale of the company to Jazz Pharmaceuticals for $700m in 2012.  He stayed on with Jazz as VP Business Development until June 2018. During his time at Jazz and EUSA, Anuj gained valuable experience leading a variety of transactions, including the $1bn acquisition of Gentium, as well as operational projects. He has also recently founded Novalio Pharma which aims to become a leading European orphan pharma company. Prior to this, he was an investment banker covering European healthcare at HSBC and J.P. Morgan and an equity research analyst in the European healthcare team at Bear Stearns.


Anuj obtained his PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Cambridge and a BSc in Chemistry from the University of Copenhagen.

Claire Walshe


Head of Biology

Claire joined TopiVert in 2011 to lead the Company’s biology team, with responsibility for compound testing, the translation of preclinical results to humans and for developing human biomarkers. She is also the Project Leader for TopiVert’s ophthalmology programme.

She moved to TopiVert from Molecular Vision, another Imperial Incubator company, where she was Assay Development Manager.  Claire has also held positions at Arana Therapeutics, Boston Scientific and in the CV group at RVC, University of London.

Claire holds a PhD in Immunology and Immunotherapy from Southampton University.