Robert Lefkowitz

Last updated
Robert Lefkowitz
Robert Lefkowitz 2 2012.jpg
Robert Lefkowitz in Stockholm 2012
Born
Robert Joseph Lefkowitz

(1943-04-15) April 15, 1943 (age 75)
NationalityUnited States
Alma mater Columbia University
Known for G protein coupled receptors
beta-arrestins
Spouse(s)Arna Brandel (divorced)
Lynn Tilley(m. 1991)
Awards National Medal of Science (2007)
BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award (2009)
Nobel Prize in Chemistry (2012)
Scientific career
FieldsReceptor Biology
Biochemistry
Institutions Duke University
Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Notable studentsLee Limbird, Jeffrey Benovic [1]

Robert Joseph Lefkowitz (born April 15, 1943) is an American physician (internist and cardiologist) and biochemist. He is best known for his groundbreaking discoveries that reveal the inner workings of an important family G protein-coupled receptors, for which he was awarded the 2012 Nobel Prize for Chemistry with Brian Kobilka. He is currently an Investigator with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute as well as a James B. Duke Professor of Medicine and Professor of Biochemistry and Chemistry at Duke University.

Physician professional who practices medicine

A physician, medical practitioner, medical doctor, or simply doctor, is a professional who practises medicine, which is concerned with promoting, maintaining, or restoring health through the study, diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of disease, injury, and other physical and mental impairments. Physicians may focus their practice on certain disease categories, types of patients, and methods of treatment—known as specialities—or they may assume responsibility for the provision of continuing and comprehensive medical care to individuals, families, and communities—known as general practice. Medical practice properly requires both a detailed knowledge of the academic disciplines, such as anatomy and physiology, underlying diseases and their treatment—the science of medicine—and also a decent competence in its applied practice—the art or craft of medicine.

G protein-coupled receptor a large protein family of receptors that detect molecules outside the cell and activate internal signal transduction pathways and cellular responses

G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), also known as seven-(pass)-transmembrane domain receptors, 7TM receptors, heptahelical receptors, serpentine receptor, and G protein–linked receptors (GPLR), constitute a large protein family of receptors that detect molecules outside the cell and activate internal signal transduction pathways and, ultimately, cellular responses. Coupling with G proteins, they are called seven-transmembrane receptors because they pass through the cell membrane seven times.

Brian Kobilka medical scientist

Brian Kent Kobilka is an American physiologist and a recipient of the 2012 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Robert Lefkowitz for discoveries that reveal the workings of G protein-coupled receptors. He is currently a professor in the department of Molecular and Cellular Physiology at Stanford University School of Medicine. He is also a co-founder of ConfometRx, a biotechnology company focusing on G protein-coupled receptors. He was named a member of the National Academy of Sciences in 2011.

Contents

Early life

Lefkowitz was born on April 15, 1943, in The Bronx, New York to Jewish parents Max and Rose Lefkowitz. Their families had immigrated to the United States from Poland in the late 19th century. [2] [3]

The Bronx Borough in New York City and county in New York, United States

The Bronx is the northernmost of the five boroughs of New York City, in the U.S. state of New York. It is south of Westchester County; northeast and east of Manhattan, across the Harlem River; and north of Queens, across the East River. Since 1914, the borough has had the same boundaries as Bronx County, the third-most densely populated county in the United States.

New York (state) State of the United States of America

New York is a state in the Northeastern United States. New York was one of the original thirteen colonies that formed the United States. With an estimated 19.54 million residents in 2018, it is the fourth most populous state. To distinguish the state from the city with the same name, it is sometimes called New York State.

Poland Republic in Central Europe

Poland, officially the Republic of Poland, is a country located in Central Europe. It is divided into 16 administrative subdivisions, covering an area of 312,696 square kilometres (120,733 sq mi), and has a largely temperate seasonal climate. With a population of approximately 38.5 million people, Poland is the sixth most populous member state of the European Union. Poland's capital and largest metropolis is Warsaw. Other major cities include Kraków, Łódź, Wrocław, Poznań, Gdańsk, and Szczecin.

After graduating from the Bronx High School of Science in 1959, [4] he attended Columbia College from which he received a Bachelor of Arts in chemistry 1962. [5]

Bronx High School of Science Specialized high school in New York City

The Bronx High School of Science is a public magnet, specialized high school in Bronx, New York, United States. It is operated by the New York City Department of Education.

A Bachelor of Arts is a bachelor's degree awarded for an undergraduate course or program in either the liberal arts, sciences, or both. Bachelor of Arts programs generally take three to four years depending on the country, institution, and specific specializations, majors, or minors. The word baccalaureus should not be confused with baccalaureatus, which refers to the one- to two-year postgraduate Bachelor of Arts with Honors degree in some countries.

He graduated from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1966 with an M.D. Degree. After serving an internship and one year of general medical residency at the College of Physicians and Surgeons, he served as Clinical and Research Associate at the National Institutes of Health from 1968 to 1970.

Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons, colloquially known as P&S and formerly Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, is the graduate professional medical school of Columbia University. Located at the Columbia University Irving Medical Center in the Washington Heights neighborhood of Manhattan with its affiliate New York-Presbyterian Hospital. Founded in 1767 by Samuel Bard as the medical department of King's College, the College of Physicians and Surgeons was the first medical school in the thirteen colonies and hence, the United States, to award the Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) degree. Beginning in 1993, P&S also was the first U.S. medical school to hold a white coat ceremony.

National Institutes of Health Medical research organization in the United States

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is the primary agency of the United States government responsible for biomedical and public health research. It was founded in the late 1870s and is now part of the United States Department of Health and Human Services. The majority of NIH facilities are located in Bethesda, Maryland. The NIH conducts its own scientific research through its Intramural Research Program (IRP) and provides major biomedical research funding to non-NIH research facilities through its Extramural Research Program.

Career

Upon completing his medical residency and research and clinical training in 1973, he was appointed Associate Professor of Medicine and Assistant Professor of Biochemistry at the Duke University Medical Center. In 1977 he was promoted to Professor of Medicine and in 1982 to James B. Duke Professor of Medicine at Duke University. [6] He is also a Professor of Biochemistry and a Professor of Chemistry. He has been an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute since 1976 and was an Established Investigator of the American Heart Association from 1973-1976. [6]

At Duke University, the title of James B. Duke Professor is given to a small number of the faculty with extraordinary records of achievement. At some universities, titles like "distinguished professor", "institute professor", or "regents professor" are counterparts of this title. Two Nobel laureates currently serve as James B. Duke Professors.

Duke University private university in Durham, North Carolina, United States

Duke University is a private research university in Durham, North Carolina. Founded by Methodists and Quakers in the present-day town of Trinity in 1838, the school moved to Durham in 1892. In 1924, tobacco and electric power industrialist James Buchanan Duke established The Duke Endowment and the institution changed its name to honor his deceased father, Washington Duke.

Lefkowitz studies receptor biology and signal transduction and is most well known for his detailed characterizations of the sequence, structure and function of the β-adrenergic and related receptors and for the discovery and characterization of the two families of proteins which regulate them, the G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) kinases and β-arrestins.

Lefkowitz made a remarkable contribution in the mid-1980s when he and his colleagues cloned the gene first for the β-adrenergic receptor, and then rapidly thereafter, for a total of 8 adrenergic receptors (receptors for adrenaline and noradrenaline). This led to the seminal discovery that all GPCRs (which include the β-adrenergic receptor) have a very similar molecular structure. The structure is defined by an amino acid sequence which weaves its way back and forth across the plasma membrane seven times. Today we know that about 1,000 receptors in the human body belong to this same family. The importance of this is that all of these receptors use the same basic mechanisms so that pharmaceutical researchers now understand how to effectively target the largest receptor family in the human body. Today, as many as 30 to 50 percent of all prescription drugs are designed to "fit" like keys into the similarly structured locks of Lefkowitz' receptors—everything from anti-histamines to ulcer drugs to beta blockers that help relieve hypertension, angina and coronary disease. [7] Lefkowitz is among the most highly cited researchers in the fields of biology, biochemistry, pharmacology, toxicology, and clinical medicine according to Thomson-ISI. [8]

Personal life

Lefkowitz is married to Lynn (née Tilley). He has five children and six grandchildren. He was previously married to Arna Brandel. [5]

Awards

Lefkowitz has received numerous awards including:

Related Research Articles

Fritz Albert Lipmann American biochemist

Fritz Albert Lipmann was a German-American biochemist and a co-discoverer in 1945 of coenzyme A. For this, together with other research on coenzyme A, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1953.

Stanford University School of Medicine is the medical school of Stanford University and is located in Stanford, California. It is the successor to the Medical Department of the University of the Pacific, founded in San Francisco in 1858. The school ceased operations in 1862, but was later in 1870 refounded by Levi Cooper Lane and renamed Cooper Medical College; the medical school was acquired by Stanford in 1908. The medical school moved to the Stanford campus near Palo Alto, California in 1959.

Paul Berg American biochemist, Professor emeritus at Stanford University & Nobel laureate in Chemistry

Paul Berg is an American biochemist and professor emeritus at Stanford University. He was the recipient of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1980, along with Walter Gilbert and Frederick Sanger. The award recognized their contributions to basic research involving nucleic acids. Berg received his undergraduate education at Penn State University, where he majored in biochemistry. He received his Ph.D. in biochemistry from Case Western Reserve University in 1952. Berg worked as a professor at Washington University School of Medicine and Stanford University School of Medicine, in addition to serving as the director of the Beckman Center for Molecular and Genetic Medicine. In addition to the Nobel Prize, Berg was presented with the National Medal of Science in 1983 and the National Library of Medicine Medal in 1986. Berg is a member of the Board of Sponsors for the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.

Paul Greengard American neuroscientist

Paul Greengard was an American neuroscientist best known for his work on the molecular and cellular function of neurons. In 2000, Greengard, Arvid Carlsson and Eric Kandel were awarded the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine for their discoveries concerning signal transduction in the nervous system. He was Vincent Astor Professor at Rockefeller University, and served on the Scientific Advisory Board of the Cure Alzheimer's Fund, as well as the Scientific Council of the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation. He was married to artist Ursula von Rydingsvard.

Thomas Cech Nobel laureate in chemistry

Thomas Robert Cech is an American chemist who shared the 1989 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Sidney Altman, for their discovery of the catalytic properties of RNA. Cech discovered that RNA could itself cut strands of RNA, suggesting that life might have started as RNA. He also studied telomeres, and his lab discovered an enzyme, TERT, which is part of the process of restoring telomeres after they are shortened during cell division. As president of Howard Hughes Medical Institute, he promoted science education, and he teaches an undergraduate chemistry course at the University of Colorado.

Joseph L. Goldstein scientist

Joseph Leonard Goldstein ForMemRS is an American biochemist. He received the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1985, along with fellow University of Texas researcher, Michael Brown, for their studies regarding cholesterol. They discovered that human cells have low-density lipoprotein (LDL) receptors that remove cholesterol from the blood and that when LDL receptors are not present in sufficient numbers, individuals develop hypercholesterolemia and become at risk for cholesterol related diseases, notably coronary heart disease. Their studies led to the development of statin drugs.

The Duke University School of Medicine along with the Duke University School of Nursing and Duke University Health System create Duke Health. Established in 1925 by James B. Duke, the School of Medicine has earned its reputation as an integral part of one of the world's foremost patient care and biomedical research institutions.

Beta-1 adrenergic receptor protein-coding gene in the species Homo sapiens

The beta-1 adrenergic receptor, also known as ADRB1, is a beta-adrenergic receptor, and also denotes the human gene encoding it. It is a G-protein coupled receptor associated with the Gs heterotrimeric G-protein and is expressed predominantly in cardiac tissue.

Richard Henderson (biologist) Nobel prize winning British biochemist

Richard Henderson, CH, FRS, FMedSci, HonFRSC is a Scottish molecular biologist and biophysicist and pioneer in the field of electron microscopy of biological molecules. Henderson shared the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2017 with Jacques Dubochet and Joachim Frank.

Paul L. Modrich american biochemist

Paul Lawrence Modrich is an American biochemist, James B. Duke Professor of Biochemistry at Duke University and Investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. He is known for his research on DNA mismatch repair. Modrich received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2015, jointly with Aziz Sancar and Tomas Lindahl.

Ralph Snyderman Chancellor of Duke University

Ralph Snyderman is Chancellor Emeritus at Duke University, James B. Duke Professor of Medicine, and director of the Duke Center for Personalized Health Care. He served as Chancellor for Health Affairs and Dean of the School of Medicine from 1989 to July 2004. During this period, he oversaw the development of the Duke University Health System and served as its first President and Chief Executive Officer. Duke University Hospital went from being nationally ranked in 3 specialities and 8th overall in 1991 up to 10 specialties and 6th overall in 2004. Snyderman has played a role in the conception and development of Personalized Health Care, an evolving model of national health care delivery. He has articulated the need to move the current focus of health care from the treatment of disease-events to personalized, predictive, preventative, and participatory care that is focused on the patient. Ralph Snyderman was the recipient of the 2012 David E. Rogers Award from the Association of American Medical Colleges who recognized him as "The Father of Personalized Medicine." He is a member of the National Academy of Medicine.

Martin J. Lohse, M.D. born 26 August 1956, is a German physician and pharmacologist.

Peter J. Ratcliffe biologist

Sir Peter John Ratcliffe FRS is a British doctor and cell and molecular biologist best known for his work on cellular reactions to hypoxia. He is a practicing clinician at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford and has been Nuffield Professor of Clinical Medicine and head of the Nuffield Department of Clinical Medicine at the University of Oxford since 2004. Since 2016 he has been the director of the Target Discovery Institute, University of Oxford, and Clinical Research Director, at the Francis Crick Institute.

Walter J. Koch

Walter J. “Wally” Koch is an American scientist best known for his work with G protein-coupled receptors in the heart and gene therapy approaches to cardiovascular disease. He is currently a Principal Investigator at Temple University School of Medicine, where he is also the Director of the Center for Translational Medicine, Professor and Chairman of the Department of Pharmacology, and W.W. Smith Chair in Cardiovascular Medicine. In 2013, he co-founded the biotech company, Renovacor.

Michel Bouvier is a Canadian biochemist and molecular pharmacologist. He is a professor of biochemistry and molecular medicine at Université de Montréal; a principal investigator and the Chief Executive Officer at the Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer; and an Associate Vice-President in Research, Scientific Discovery, Creation and Innovation at Université de Montréal. His work focuses on the study of cell signaling towards the discovery of new pharmaceutical drugs.

William "Bill" G. Kaelin Jr. is a professor of medicine at Harvard University. Kaelin is a 2016 recipient of the Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research. He also has won the 2016 ASCO Science of Oncology Award, and 2016 AACR Princess Takamatsu Award. His laboratory studies tumor suppressor proteins.

Arun Kumar Shukla is an Indian structural biologist and the Joy-Gill Chair professor at the department of biological sciences and bioengineering at the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur. Known for his studies on G protein-coupled receptor, Shukla is a Wellcome Trust-DBT Intermediate Fellow and a recipient of the SwarnaJayanti Fellowship of the Department of Science and Technology. The Department of Biotechnology of the Government of India awarded him the National Bioscience Award for Career Development, one of the highest Indian science awards, for his contributions to biosciences, in 2017/18.

References

  1. http://news.vumc.org/2012/10/18/nobel-in-chemistry-research-reveals-vu-ties-that-bind/
  2. Ralph Snyderman (2011-10-03). "Introduction of Robert J. Lefkowitz". Jci.org. Retrieved 2012-10-12.
  3. Jay Price (2012-12-30). "Dr. Robert Lefkowitz, Nobel in hand, still shapes young researchers". News & Observer. Archived from the original on 2013-01-20. Retrieved 2013-01-17.
  4. Newman, Andy (October 10, 2012). "Another Nobel for Bronx Science, This One in Chemistry". New York Times .
  5. 1 2 "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-01-20. Retrieved 2013-01-17.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  6. 1 2 "HHMI Investigators - Robert J. Lefkowitz, M.D". Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Retrieved 2013-01-14.
  7. "Pioneers of cell receptor research share America's top prize in medicine". Albany Medical Center Website.
  8. "Highly Cited Research - Research Analytics - Thomson Reuters". Hcr3.webofknowledge.com. 2011-12-31. Retrieved 2012-10-12.[ permanent dead link ]
  9. "Biomedicine 2009 Robert J. Lefkowitz". BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Awards. Retrieved 2013-01-14.
  10. "North Carolina scientist wins American Heart Association award for discovering receptors' role as specific targets for drug therapy". American Heart Association. 2009-11-15. Retrieved 2013-01-14.
  11. "Robert Lefkowitz receiving the National Medal of Science". Duke University. 2008-09-28. Retrieved 2013-01-14. - YouTube video of the ceremony
  12. Duke Medicine News and Communications (2008-09-28). "Duke Medicine Physician-Scientist Receives National Medal of Science". Duke Health.org. Retrieved 2013-01-14.
  13. "Announcement and Citation". The Shaw Prize. 2007-06-12. Retrieved 2013-01-14.
  14. "Albany Medical Center Prize". Albany Medical College. Archived from the original on 2012-07-17. Retrieved 2013-01-14.
  15. "Fondation Lefoulon Delalande - Historique des prix". Fondation Lefoulon - Delalande. Retrieved 2013-01-14.
  16. "Jessie Stevenson Kovalenko Medal". National Academy of Sciences. Retrieved 2013-01-14.
  17. "Grants and Awards Program Fact Sheet" (PDF). Bristol-Myers Squibb. Retrieved 2013-01-14.
  18. "Robert J. Lefkowitz". Gairdner. Retrieved 2013-01-14.
  19. "Previous Winners of Society Awards" (PDF). American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics . Retrieved 2013-01-14.
Awards
Preceded by
Dan Shechtman
Nobel Prize in Chemistry laureate
2012
With: Brian Kobilka
Succeeded by
Michael Levitt
Martin Karplus
Arieh Warshel