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Dr. Donald Ingber cited for outstanding achievements

Donald Ingber

Donald Ingber, M.D., Ph.D., founding director of the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University, has been awarded the Biomedical Engineering Society’s prestigious Pritzker Distinguished Lectureship for 2009. The lectureship recognizes outstanding achievements, a high level of originality and leadership in the science and practice of biomedical engineering.

Dr. Ingber was also recently recognized by the Tufts University School of Medicine for a body of work that is both innovative and important.

Presentation of the Biomedical Engineering Society award, a keynote speech and a dinner honoring Dr. Ingber will take place at the society’s Annual Meeting in Pittsburgh, October 8-10, 2010.

“I am truly honored to be recognized with this award and to be provided with the opportunity to address such distinguished colleagues,” said Dr. Ingber, who is also the Judah Folkman Professor of Vascular Biology at Harvard Medical School and Children’s Hospital Boston, a professor of Bioengineering at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and an affiliated faculty member of The Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology.

Dr. Ingber will deliver a talk, “From Cellular Mechanotransduction to Biologically Inspired Engineering,” that will fulfill the lectureship’s goal of critically reviewing an area of bioengineering and offering his vision for the future.

“Typically, bioengineers have applied engineering principles to solve medical problems. But we are now at a tipping point in the history of science and engineering – we are beginning to understand enough about how Nature builds, controls and manufactures that entirely new engineering principles are already beginning to be discovered,” Ingber said. “These new engineering strategies will transform medicine as well as non-medical areas never before touched by the biology revolution."

The Pritzker Distinguished Lectureship has been awarded twice before, to Antonios Mikos of Rice University in 2007, and to Buddy D. Ratner, of the University of Washington in 2008.

The text of Dr. Ingber’s lecture will be published in the BMES Annuals of Biomedical Engineering Journal and on the Wyss Institute website

Dr. Ingber was also recently named the 2009 Charlton Lecturer at Tufts, an award given to scientists whose work is both significant and appealing to a diverse audience. Dr. Ingber delivered the Charlton lecture, which is named for donor Earl P. Charlton, on Oct. 27, 2009, to members of all departments and divisions on the Tufts University health sciences campus, including the medical school, graduate school, dental school, and the Tufts Medical Center Hospital. 

Dr. Ingber recently founded the Wyss Institute, which was launched in January 2009 with a $125 million gift from entrepreneur Hansjörg Wyss. The interdisciplinary Institute is focused on discovering Nature’s design principles, and on applying these insights to engineer bioinspired materials and devices.

Dr. Ingber’s contributions to science include almost 300 publications and more than 35 patents in areas ranging from anti-cancer therapeutics, tissue engineering, medical devices, and nanotechnology to bioinformatics software. He helped found two biotechnology start-ups, and has consulted for multiple pharmaceutical, biotechnology, venture capital and private investment companies, as well as the Department of Defense, the Office of National Intelligence and National Public Radio.

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