William S Messer



  • Biography – William S. Messer, Jr.

    Dr. Messer grew up in western Massachusetts and received a BS in Biology from Springfield College and an MS and PhD in Neuroscience from the University of Rochester. He joined the faculty of the College of Pharmacy at the University of Toledo in 1985 as an assistant professor in the Department of Medicinal & Biological Chemistry. He was promoted to professor of medicinal chemistry in 1995 and then professor of pharmacology in 2001. Dr. Messer served as Chair of the Department of Pharmacology from 2001-2013, and as Vice President of Research at the University of Toledo from 2013-2016 before rejoining the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences as a full-time faculty member.

    Dr. Messer’s research interests have focused on the development of new treatments for neurological and psychiatric disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease, schizophrenia, and autism spectrum disorders.  He led a team of investigators that developed a selective M1 muscarinic agonist, CDD-0102A, as a potential treatment for memory and cognitive deficits associated with Alzheimer’s disease.  He co-founded a small pharmaceutical company (Cognitive Pharmaceuticals Ltd.) and helped compile the necessary preclinical data for filing a successful IND with the FDA.  Following the merger of Cognitive with Mithridion, Inc., he served as Chief Scientific Officer as CDD-0102A was evaluated in Phase I clinical trials. 

    Since returning to a full-time faculty position, Dr. Messer has focused on teaching pharmacy students and developing novel allosteric modulators of muscarinic receptors. He also founded a new company, Psyneurgy Pharmaceuticals LLC, to develop new treatments for autism spectrum disorders and other psychiatric and neurological disorders.

selected publications

full name

  • William S Messer


Cumulative publications in Scholars@UToledo