Phong Vu, PhD
Founder, Managing Member
Dr. Phong Vu is a graduate of Florida’s public education system. After graduation from Maynard Evans High School in Orlando, Phong attended The University of Central Florida. In the laboratories of Professor John T. Gupton at UCF, Phong discovered the joy of chemical synthesis of biologically active molecules. In 1991, Phong joined Professor Robert A. Holton’s laboratory at The Florida State University. At FSU Phong worked on a doctoral dissertation titled: “Synthetic Studies Towards Practical Total Syntheses of Taxol and Its Analogs”. This work was extended to the formation Taxolog, Inc. At Taxolog, Phong and his team prepared thousands of taxane analogs. Phong spear headed the manufacturing of several investigational new drugs (INDs) (Milataxel, Simotaxel, TL-310). Phong also provided chemical synthesis and pharmaceutical support for the Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA) for generic version of docetaxel. In 2009, Phong returned to FSU and continued to work on taxane chemistry research. In 2018, Phong founded Synth Taxus to continue offering synthetic taxane chemistry and pharmaceutical development expertise to industry.
Jenny Vu, PhD
After completing a master's degree in organic chemistry at Florida State University, Jenny Vu accepted a position at Merck & Co, Inc. in Rahway, NJ in January 2001. Working at the internationally acclaimed Natural Products Isolation and Process Research Labs of Merck, provided Jenny with valuable experience in the pharmaceutical industry. While working at Merck, Jenny was twice identified as a Top Performer and was awarded the Team Award in Process Chemistry in 2005 for collaborative efforts toward an efficient synthesis of a molecule targeting the calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP). Later that same year she joined the research lab of Professor James Leighton at Columbia University in New York and was awarded her PhD in 2010 for work on enantioselective Mannich-type reactions promoted by strained silane Lewis acids. After a year long appointment in the research lab of Professor Robert Holton, Jenny joined the chemistry faculty at Valdosta State University. In this capacity, she secured several grants including the American Chemical Society Petroleum Research Foundation (ACS-PRF) grant. In 2018, she joins her husband, Phong, at Synth Taxus to continue contributing to the chemical community.