Dr David Palmer


Pure and Applied Chemistry

Personal statement

I am a Reader in Chemistry at the University of Stratchlyde.  I was born in London, but grew up in Cumbria in north west England.  After obtaining a Masters degree in Chemistry from the University of Sheffield, I worked as a synthesis chemist for Norbrook Laboratories before reading my PhD in Chemistry at the University of Cambridge.  Between 2008 and 2011, I was a postdoctoral researcher at Aarhus University in Denmark and then at the Max Planck Institute for Mathematics in the Sciences in Leipzig, Germany.   In 2012 I was awarded a Marie Curie Research Fellowship and returned to the UK to join the Department of Physics at the University of Strathclyde.  I started as a Lecturer in the Department of Pure and Applied Chemistry in 2014.   I was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2019, and to Reader in 2022.


Blinded predictions and post-hoc analysis of the second solubility challenge data : exploring training data and feature set selection for machine and deep learning models
Conn Jonathan G M, Carter James W, Conn Justin J A, Subramanian Vigneshwari, Baxter Andrew, Engkvist Ola, Llinas Antonio, Ratkova Ekaterina L, Pickett Stephen D, McDonagh James L, Palmer David S
Journal of Chemical Information and Modeling (2023)
Accurately predicting solvation free energy in aqueous and organic solvents beyond 298 K by combining deep learning and the 1D reference interaction site model
Fowles Daniel J, McHardy Rose G, Ahmad Abdullah, Palmer David S
Digital Discovery (2022)
Pocket-size near-IR spectrometers for rapid examination of contaminated textile fibres at the crime-scene
Rashed Hamad S, Parrott Andrew J, Nordon Alison, Baker Matthew J, Palmer David S
Vibrational Spectroscopy Vol 123 (2022)
Liquid biopsy for pancreatic cancer detection using infrared spectroscopy
Sala Alexandra, Cameron James M, Jenkins Cerys A, Barr Hugh, Christie Loren, Conn Justin J A, Evans Thomas R Jeffry, Harris Dean A, Palmer David S, Rinaldi Christopher, Theakstone Ashton G, Baker Matthew J
Cancers Vol 14 (2022)
Clinical validation of a spectroscopic liquid biopsy for earlier detection of brain cancer
Cameron James M, Brennan Paul M, Antoniou Georgios, Butler Holly J, Christie Loren, Conn Justin JA, Curran Tom, Gray Ewan, Hegarty Mark G, Jenkinson Michael D, Orringer Daniel, Palmer David S, Sala Alexandra, Smith Benjamin R
Neuro-Oncology Advances Vol 4 (2022)
Infra-red Spectroscopy System
Baker Matthew J, Hegarty Mark, Butler Holly, Palmer David

More publications

Research interests

The main focus of my research is the development and application of molecular simulation and molecular informatics methods to solve industrially relevant problems at the interface between biochemistry and chemical physics.  Recent examples have included the development of new methods for computational drug discovery (in collaboration with AstraZeneca, GSK, and Pfizer) and the design of an enzyme for use in food manufacturing (in collaboration with Chr. Hansen A/S).   I am Founding Director of the cancer diagnostics company, Dxcover (formerly ClinSpec Diagnostics Ltd)

Professional activities

AI for Drug Discovery
Machine learning from continuous functions: applications to solvation thermodynamics and cancer diagnostics
Solvation Descriptors for Modelling Chromatographic Retention Times
Engage with Strathclyde 2021
Invited speaker
Engage with Strathclyde 2021
Invited speaker
2020 ScotChem Computational Chemistry Virtual Symposium

More professional activities


DTP 2224 University of Strathclyde | Fyfe, Calum
Reid, Marc (Principal Investigator) Palmer, David (Co-investigator) Fyfe, Calum (Research Co-investigator)
01-Jan-2022 - 01-Jan-2026
Development of molecular-solvent interaction descriptors to improve accuracy of Quantitative Structure Retention Relationship model
Palmer, David (Principal Investigator)
01-Jan-2021 - 31-Jan-2025
Doctoral Training Partnership 2020-2021 University of Strathclyde | Taylor, Madeleine
Palmer, David (Principal Investigator) Reid, Marc (Co-investigator) Taylor, Madeleine (Research Co-investigator)
01-Jan-2021 - 01-Jan-2025
Solvation thermodynamics of non-aqueous solvent in the 3D Reference Interaction Site Model (3D-RISM).
Palmer, David (Principal Investigator)
256000 CPU hours awarded on Cirrus (EPSRC Tier-2 National HPC Facility at University of Edinburgh)
27-Jan-2021 - 27-Jan-2022
Industrial Case Account - University of Strathclyde 2020 | Russell, Hayley
Nelson, David (Principal Investigator) Palmer, David (Co-investigator) Russell, Hayley (Research Co-investigator)
01-Jan-2021 - 01-Jan-2025
Understanding the Reliability and Transferability of Machine Learning
Nelson, David (Principal Investigator) Palmer, David (Co-investigator) Reid, Marc (Co-investigator)
01-Jan-2021 - 31-Jan-2024

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