Caroline Benn

DDF Discovery

Caro brings over 21 years of neurodegenerative disease research and drug discovery experience to the Dementia Discovery Fund U.K. team.

She joined in December 2018 as Scientific Strategist and will focus on a project aiming to modulate DNA damage response in repeat expansion diseases.


Prior experience

From September 2016 to November 2018, Caroline was an Associate Director of CNS Biology at Astex Pharmaceuticals in Cambridge UK. In this role, she was responsible for strategic input, portfolio management and leadership within multidisciplinary project teams focusing on neurodegenerative disease drug discovery. Prior to this, Caroline was at Pfizer Neuroscience and Pain Research Unit as a group leader and drug discovery research project leader with a remit spanning early stage activities through to the clinic. She has a track record for championing sophisticated molecular and cellular approaches to impact on drug discovery; including single cell transcriptomics, optogenetic manipulation and stem cell-based approaches for disease modelling and therapeutics. Before working in industry, Caroline focused on unravelling Huntington’s disease pathophysiology in academia for 12 years with particular focus on nuclear mechanisms.

Academic Credentials

Caro holds a BSc (Hons) in Neuroscience, from the University of Sussex, and a Ph.D. in Molecular Neurogenetics, Kings College London. She completed her postdoctoral work at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School and Kings College, London.

Outside of SV

Caroline lives with her family in rural Cambridgeshire and enjoys a range of sports in addition to creating artworks (often with scientific inspiration – neurons are beautiful).

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