Ian Dunham

Ian Dunham
Director, Open Targets

Ian Dunham is Director of Open Targets, an innovative public-private partnership to improve identification and prioritisation of drug targets. Open Targets conducts research programmes in bioinformatics and experimental genomics and genetics to integrate data that will improve drug target choice.

As part of the partnership, Ian's group have developed the Open Targets Platform and the Open Targets Genetics Portal to provide public access to integrated information around the likely efficacy of a drug target. These resources interact with a number of other groups within EMBL-EBI including the SPOT team for ontologies, GWAS catalog, Chembl, EVA, Uniprot, EuropePMC and Expression Atlas.

Ian's earlier research interests include experimental and computational approaches to genome-wide mapping of regulatory elements and chromatin state in the human genome as part of the NHGRI ENCODE project, as well as understanding the influence of variation on regulatory elements in human and other organisms, including leading the Ensembl Regulation team.

He was previously a Senior Group Leader at the Wellcome Sanger Institute from 1993, focusing first on genome sequencing including the first human chromosome sequence in 1999, and subsequently on developing functional maps of the human genome. This included gene structure maps, variation maps, and the first chromosome-wide linkage disequilibrium map. He also holds an Associate Faculty postion at the Wellcome Sanger Institute.

ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2525-5598

Tel:+ 44 (0) 1223 492 636 / Fax:

Open Targets

Open Targets is an innovative, large-scale, multi-year, public-private partnership that uses human genetics and genomics data for systematic drug target identification and prioritisation. Through its experimental and informatics research programmes, Open Targets provides an initial assessment of the likely effectiveness of pharmacological intervention on these targets, using genome-scale experiments and analysis. 

At the heart of Open Targets is a consortium of complementary partner institutions that bring their respective expertise to collaborative projects that systematically identify and prioritise drug targets: the European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI), the Wellcome Sanger Institute, GSK, Takeda, Sanofi, and Bristol Myers Squibb.

Open Targets aims to provide an R&D framework that applies to all aspects of human disease, to improve the success rate for discovering new medicines, and to share its data openly in the interests of accelerating drug discovery through high-impact research publicationsreview articles, and specialised open-source informatics tools, including the Open Targets Platform and the Open Targets Genetics Portal.



Team members

  • Nabeel Azam
  • Jarrod Baker
  • Miguel Carmona
  • Helena Cornu
  • Carlos Cruz
  • Luca Fumis
  • Andrew Hercules
  • Ajay Kumar
  • Paris Litterick
  • Manuel Bernal Llinares
  • Irene Lopez
  • Cinzia Malangone
  • Ellen Mcdonagh
  • Alfredo Miranda
  • Hanna Najgebauer
  • David Ochoa
  • Olesya Razuvayevskaya
  • Jeremy Schwartzentruber
  • Daniel Suveges
  • Konstantinos Tsirigos
  • Kirill Tsukanov
  • Clare West