Sinclair Research Center’s Principal Pathologist Dr. Alric Lopez joined the company in 2019 after 18 years working for various CROs including Covance and Huntingdon Life Sciences (now rebranded Envigo). Lopez, an accomplished scientist whose research has been published in Science magazine, says his career in drug development has always been driven by one simple goal: Helping people live better lives.
“Developing drugs that help people, it doesn’t get any better than that,” Lopez says. “It’s one of the basic problems in the world that we’re trying to solve here, so it’s pretty rewarding. When you make a list – world hunger, the environment, climate change, cancer, diseases – I mean, it’s one of the top five, for sure.”
Lopez says that some of the most rewarding moments in his career have been hearing the stories of people whose lives have been improved by medications he helped bring to market. “When I’ve heard people talking about a drug I worked on, that they take … it makes me feel really good.” This is especially true, he adds, when the drug is a novel one that helps patients who may have had no or limited treatment options before.
Lopez says it is his devotion to helping patients that inspires him to do his best work and continue learning and growing as a scientist. “For what I do, I have to keep up to date and read about what’s new,” he says. “Actually, with what I do, I learn something new every day, and that keeps me happy and going.”
Lopez says his love of learning is what first drew him to science as a child. “My mother was a biology teacher, so science, or biology specifically, was all around me all of the time, and I was always very interested. [Science] is a career that always allows you to learn new things all the time, and that’s what I enjoy the most.”
That curiosity and thirst for learning extends equally to Lopez’s personal life. When he’s not at the Sinclair laboratories, he can be found traveling the world. Describing himself as “an avid scuba diver,” he says he loves to explore new places – the more exotic, the better. Lopez also has three dogs, who he says are not at all impressed by his scientific achievements and regard him as their “dog butler.”