Professor Paul Hockings

Senior Imaging Director and a passionate hiker when he’s not busy solving customer’s problems

I like variety and here at Antaros Medical my work day is never the same. Our purpose is to enable pharma companies to make the right decisions as early as possible. It could be finding a new imaging marker to understand a new mode of action. It could also be ensuring that drug efficacy and changes over time is measured in a robust and precise way, no matter if the study is run in 3 or 30 countries. There are always interesting problems to solve!

My role as Senior Imaging Director is very varied in itself. An important part is to understand customers’ needs, develop medical imaging methods and design imaging studies that live up their expectations. Another important part is to set up sites close to where the patients are and train local staff all around the world. It’s a very varied working day, but also incredibly inspiring to know that we contribute to creating medicines that can improve people’s lives.

The best of both worlds
I’m professor of Medical Imaging at Chalmers University of Technology, but I also have extensive experience from the pharmaceutical industry. Working at Antaros Medical is a bit like the best of both worlds. Customers who need medical imaging biomarkers to solve difficult drug development problems normally have two choices – to outsource the task to a classic “CRO” that has a standard package to choose from, or to turn to the academia for a research project with more uncertain endpoints. Antaros Medical is the third option. We solve scientific problems using imaging, but deliver to industry timelines. And we have a lot of expertise in drug development including the importance of quality and complying with regulations such as GCP and GDPR. In addition, we do it in a multicentre setting, so that it works for many patients, at different sites and in different countries. At the same time, we are close to the research in the sense that much of what we do leads to publications in scientific journals (see our publications).

“There is always a new challenge to explore”

Proud pioneer in kidney research
Kidney disease is a research area where we are at the absolute forefront. The challenge with the kidneys is that they are so heterogeneous. Therefore, the markers become quite non-specific. There can be an indication that the kidneys are leaking protein, but it is not clear why. A biopsy can say all or nothing. Antaros Medical can deliver a more comprehensive picture of both kidneys’ physiology and function from a global perspective. We are quite unique in that. There are academic groups that have achieved something similar, but they do not have a robust solution that can be repeated in other environments and at many sites. The development in the field of kidney diseases has been quite slow over the last 20 years. But now there are several new drugs underway. And it is wonderful to be able to say “I have been involved in this drug’s development”.

High energy level in the office
Another thing I really appreciate about Antaros Medical is the atmosphere we have in the office. It’s open with a high energy level and can be quite intense at times. Maybe that’s why I like to hike when I’m free.