Solutions, Technology, and Delivery

Neil Butt


Neil has over 25 year’s experience in the biotechnology industry covering both research and business development. Neil’s industrial experience started in R&D (UK Head of Research for Whatman Bioscience), before joining PA Consulting. Neil then joined Antitope as Head of Business Development and oversaw year on year growth and was eventually sold to Polytherics (with the merged company becoming Abzena).

As Head of Business development, Neil was part of the executive management team that managed the listing on AIM and the acquisition of two US companies. On leaving Abzena, Neil joined IONTAS and established the company as the principal service provider for mammalian display, a novel platform or identifying therapeutic antibodies. Neil was on both the executive management team and board of IONTAS which managed the acquisition of IONTAS by FairJourney Biologics in May 2020. 

Anthony Pitt

Anthony Pitt


Anthony has more than 25 years’ experience in start-up and large multinational companies and is responsible for all of Orbit’s technical moderations. 

After starting out in academic research Anthony moved to the commercial sector and has lead R&D groups in the development of research and drug discovery tools and technologies, has managed manufacturing and quality control departments and is experienced in development and implementation of IP strategies. 

Anthony holds a BSc in Biochemistry and Genetics from the University of Nottingham. 

Dr Tracy Lane

Technical Director

Tracy Lane is head of development at Orbit Discovery, she is responsible for the development programmes for both affinity and functional screening. She has twenty years of research experience covering both academic and industrial settings. Prior to joining Orbit Discovery, her research focused on the role of a mutant G protein coupled receptor in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. This research was based at the University of Oxford in collaboration with Eli Lilly and GlaxoSmithKline. 

Previously, Tracy has researched factors involved in the migration, proliferation, and fate of neuronal stem cells based both at the University of Oxford and at Emory University (Atlanta G.A.). During her PhD at Sheffield University, she developed a novel biomaterial that was able to direct neuronal attachment and outgrowth.  

Brett Rowley

Finance Director

Brett  is responsible for the smooth running of Orbit Discovery’s finance department. He has over a decade of experience as a Business Consultant and Management Accountant across a wide variety of industries. Prior to joining Orbit Discovery, he co-founded Outcor Financial Management who is one of the leading outsourced financial, strategy and growth management companies in South Africa. Having managed a portfolio of over fifty clients as well as managing the team of highly skilled employees, he has a well-rounded skill set and insight into various real-life situations and how to manage them.

Dr Lydia Aschauer

Head of Screening Operations

Lydia Aschauer is the Head of Screening Operations at Orbit Discovery, responsible for overseeing internal and external affinity screening campaigns. She is also in charge of establishing cell models for the cellular functional screen.

Lydia has about fifteen years of research experience acquired in an industry and academic background.

Previously, she investigated the effects of metals on the tumour-suppressor p53 as a Postdoc at the MRC Toxicology in Leicester. Before that, during her PhD at the Medical University of Innsbruck, she researched the mechanistic effects of nephrotoxins on the functions of renal epithelial cells as part of the EU-project PREDICT-IV.

Dr Caroline Woffindale

Head of Technology Development

Caroline Woffindale is Head of Technology Development at Orbit Discovery, responsible for leading platform development for both the core technologies (affinity) and advanced technologies (functional) teams.

Caroline obtained her DPhil from the University of Oxford, where she investigated RNA-based therapeutics for Alzheimer’s disease. Part of this work explored the potential of exosomes as natural nanocarriers for therapeutic RNAs. She also investigated novel multi-gene targeting locked nucleic acids as a therapeutic strategy. Following this, Caroline completed postdoctoral work at the University of Oxford, where she investigated data-driven drug discovery using HCI assays for Alzheimer’s disease.

Since joining Orbit Discovery in 2019, Caroline has worked within the affinity and functional development and screening teams, helping to establish and evolve Orbit’s novel screening platforms.

Dr Simon Bushell

Head of Target Development

Simon Bushell originally trained as a protein crystallographer and completed undergraduate studies at Monash University where he also completed his PhD in the lab of Professor Jamie Rossjohn. Simon then relocated to the United Kingdom to work as a Research Fellow at the University of St Andrews with Professor Jim Naismith at the Scottish Structural Proteomics Facility

In 2013, he joined the Structural Genomics Consortium, a research department within the University of Oxford, exploring the structural characterisation of human ion channels and other high-impact membrane protein targets. 

Simon joined Orbit Discovery in 2019, establishing the Target Biology group to produce high quality target protein and to use structural biology to inform screening campaigns and experiment design. 

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