Here in this month’s editorial/commentary section appears a column by Peter T. Kissinger titled “The people vs. pharma,” and it is just one in a very long line of DDNews columns penned (or typed, if we want to be literal) by him over the years, as he appears every other issue.
However, while Pete has long been a fixture for many of us here at DDNews, it doesn’t escape our attention that perhaps we are long overdue to introduce him more formally to those of you who don’t know him professionally or who lack awareness of or connections to the institutions and companies mentioned in his bio after every column.
The most concise introduction might be through his favorite motto and through a particular sentiment.
That motto: Better Samples, Better Measurements, Better Decisions, Better Healthcare.
That sentiment: Why we love bioanalytical chemistry—It matters, supporting drug discovery, development and application after approval.
But to be more explicit, let us offer a condensed version of his plentiful experience and qualifications. Peter T. Kissinger, Ph.D., is the founder of Bioanalytical Systems Inc. (BASi), which he led from 1974 to 2007, and is a professor of chemistry at Purdue University in Indiana. Prior to joining the faculty at Purdue in 1975, he was a research associate at the University of Kansas (1970-1972) and an assistant professor at Michigan State University (1972-1975).
“I do not currently maintain a university research group, but continue to teach undergraduates and graduate students as an enjoyable and very satisfying activity,” he told me recently. “I figure teaching guarantees an everlasting life as we endeavor to pass along wisdom.”
As for company experience, BASi, headquartered in West Lafayette, Ind. (with preclinical operations in Evansville), manufactures instrumentation for pharmaceutical research and carries out contract bioanalytical, pharmacological and toxicological research for pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. In 2005, he became the chairman of Prosolia, which markets mass spectrometry innovations for the life sciences and is focused on ambient ionization techniques for tissue imaging and therapeutic drug monitoring. In 2007, he and Candice Kissinger founded Phlebotics Inc., a medical device company dedicated to improving diagnostic information for intensive care medicine.
Kissinger’s research has focused on the study of electroanalytical sensors, liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry techniques and in-vivo methodology for drug metabolism and the neurosciences. He has published more than 250 scientific papers, most of which have been—despite what one might expect given four decades in a tenured faculty position—proprietary in nature and/or contracted to firms outside academia.
“My career has been unusually varied, but the common theme remains better bioanalytical data for better decisions and ultimately better patient care,” he says. “My graduate school research on thin-layer electrochemistry impacted the advance of amperometric glucose sensors now sold worldwide at retail beginning in the early 1980s. I was fortunate to help pioneer the use of modern liquid chromatography for neuropharmacology in the 1970s. This development originated with my postdoctoral work and resulted in the founding of my first startup company in 1974, which ultimately became public in 1997.”
There’s a lot more we could tell you about Pete, but we only have so much room to work with. Suffice it to say that when he shares facts and opinions, he does so with a lot of knowledge to back him up. Or, as he puts it, “My role at DDNews is to stimulate thought and debate; and not report unambiguous facts. There are other venues for that.”