Matthew D. Hall, Ph.D.

Senior Scientist

Early Translation Branch


Scientific Director


9800 Medical Center Drive
Rockville, MD 20850


Research Topics

Matthew Hall directs the Early Translation Branch (ETB), which was established in 2004 with a foundational focus on functionalizing the human genome by creating small molecule probes, developing new technologies for assay development, and leveraging expertise in the early discovery space. ETB is home to 10 research groups, staffed by approximately 80 scientists and trainees with diverse expertise including medicinal chemistry, informatics (cheminformatics and data science), assay biology, and advanced tissue models. ETB is also the home of the Assay Guidance Manual (AGM) and associated workshops and training programs, given its mandate for disseminating best practices in translational science.

Hall Research Group

We develop and optimize new biochemical and cell-based discovery approaches for automated, high-throughput small molecule discovery. Our collaborative drug discovery programs are initiated in collaboration with both NIH and extramural partners, working in a team environment with medicinal chemistry and chem-informatics groups. While we are disease agnostic, we have a strong research emphasis on rare and neglected diseases. Our group's translational science research covers topics including:

Target class profiling with HTS against multiple small molecule methyltransferases as a prototype class, to create first-in-class probes, characterize the chemical-biological space of MTases, and test the translational value of this approach.

Label-free assay technologies and the implementation of mass spectrometry into both biochemical and cellular HTS.

Boundary-crossing open science through the rapid and open sharing of complete high-throughput screening datasets (and expert-curated public activity data on SARS-CoV-2 variants) via NCATS's data sharing hub - the OpenData Portal, as well as no-strings-attached sharing of ETB's novel chemical probes.


Hall is the Director of the Early Translation Branch (ETB) within the Division of Preclinical Innovation, where he oversees the activities of the branch's early discovery efforts. As Director of ETB, Hall has worked to build partnerships with other institutes at NIH to address unmet medical needs. He is currently co-chair of the NCI Chemical Biology Consortium (of which ETB is a member), co-chair of the NIH ACTIV TRACE group addressing COVID variants and therapeutics, oversees an ETB collaborative program for the NIH HEAL Initiative, created a discovery partnership with the NCI Natural Products Program, and established the Antiviral Program for Pandemics with NIAID and Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA).

Hall joined NCATS in 2015 as a Biology Group Lead in the NCATS Chemical Genomics Center. Prior to joining NCATS, Hall worked as a staff scientist and postdoctoral fellow at NCI in the Laboratory of Cell Biology with Dr. Michael M. Gottesman, was an American Australian Association Sir Keith Murdoch Fellow at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and was trained at the University of Sydney, Australia. He has published more than 160 peer-reviewed papers and is on the editorial boards of Drugs of the Future and ACS Pharmacology & Translational Science.

Selected Publications

  1. Jagodinsky JC, Sulima A, Cao Y, Poprawski JE, Blackman BN, Lloyd JR, Swenson RE, Gottesman MM, Hall MD. Evaluation of fluorophore-tethered platinum complexes to monitor the fate of cisplatin analogs. J Biol Inorg Chem. 2015;20(7):1081-95.
  2. Kalish H, Klumpp-Thomas C, Hunsberger S, Baus HA, Fay MP, Siripong N, Wang J, Hicks J, Mehalko J, Travers J, Drew M, Pauly K, Spathies J, Ngo T, Adusei KM, Karkanitsa M, Croker JA, Li Y, Graubard BI, Czajkowski L, Belliveau O, Chairez C, Snead KR, Frank P, Shunmugavel A, Han A, Giurgea LT, Rosas LA, Bean R, Athota R, Cervantes-Medina A, Gouzoulis M, Heffelfinger B, Valenti S, Caldararo R, Kolberg MM, Kelly A, Simon R, Shafiq S, Wall V, Reed S, Ford EW, Lokwani R, Denson JP, Messing S, Michael SG, Gillette W, Kimberly RP, Reis SE, Hall MD, Esposito D, Memoli MJ, Sadtler K. Undiagnosed SARS-CoV-2 seropositivity during the first 6 months of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States. Sci Transl Med. 2021;13(601).
  3. Hu X, Shrimp JH, Guo H, Xu M, Chen CZ, Zhu W, Zakharov AV, Jain S, Shinn P, Simeonov A, Hall MD, Shen M. Discovery of TMPRSS2 Inhibitors from Virtual Screening as a Potential Treatment of COVID-19. ACS Pharmacol Transl Sci. 2021;4(3):1124-1135.
  4. Brimacombe KR, Zhao T, Eastman RT, Hu X, Wang K, Backus M, Baljinnyam B, Chen CZ, Chen L, Eicher T, Ferrer M, Fu Y, Gorshkov K, Guo H, Hanson QM, Itkin Z, Kales SC, Klumpp-Thomas C, Lee EM, Michael S, Mierzwa T, Patt A, Pradhan M, Renn A, Shinn P, Shrimp JH, Viraktamath A, Wilson KM, Xu M, Zakharov AV, Zhu W, Zheng W, Simeonov A, Mathé EA, Lo DC, Hall MD, Shen M. An OpenData portal to share COVID-19 drug repurposing data in real time. bioRxiv. 2020.
  5. Rai G, Urban DJ, Mott BT, Hu X, Yang SM, Benavides GA, Johnson MS, Squadrito GL, Brimacombe KR, Lee TD, Cheff DM, Zhu H, Henderson MJ, Pohida K, Sulikowski GA, Dranow DM, Kabir M, Shah P, Padilha E, Tao D, Fang Y, Christov PP, Kim K, Jana S, Muttil P, Anderson T, Kunda NK, Hathaway HJ, Kusewitt DF, Oshima N, Cherukuri M, Davies DR, Norenberg JP, Sklar LA, Moore WJ, Dang CV, Stott GM, Neckers L, Flint AJ, Darley-Usmar VM, Simeonov A, Waterson AG, Jadhav A, Hall MD, Maloney DJ. Pyrazole-Based Lactate Dehydrogenase Inhibitors with Optimized Cell Activity and Pharmacokinetic Properties. J Med Chem. 2020;63(19):10984-11011.

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This page was last updated on Monday, January 29, 2024