William Z. Potter

Scientific Advisory Board Member at Karuna Therapeutics

Bill Potter earned his B.A., M.S., M.D., and Ph.D. at Indiana University, after which he functioned in positions of increasing responsibility and seniority over the next 25 years at the National Institutes of Health with a research focus on translational neuroscience. While at the NIH, Bill was widely published and appointed to many societies, committees and boards; these roles enabled him to develop a wide reputation as an expert in psychopharmacological sciences and championing the development of novel treatments for CNS disorders. Dr. Potter left the NIH in 1996 to accept a position as Executive Director for early clinical neuroscience at Lilly Research Labs, and in 2004 he joined Merck Research Labs (MRL) as Vice President of Clinical Neuroscience, then moved to the newly created position of Translational Neuroscience in 2006, a position from which he retired in January of 2011. His experience at Lilly and MRL in identifying, expanding and developing methods of evaluating CNS effects of compounds in human brain cover state-of-the-art approaches across multiple modalities. These include brain imaging and cerebrospinal fluid proteomics as well as development of more sensitive clinical measures. Dr. Potter continues as an Emeritus co-chair of the Neuroscience Steering Committee of the FNIH and serves in an advisory capacity to stakeholder organizations in brain diseases where he champions the position that more disciplined hypothesis testing of targets in humans through public/private partnerships is the best near-term approach to moving CNS drug development forward for important neurologic and psychiatric illnesses.


  • Scientific Advisory Board Member

    Current role

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