Kevan Shokat, Ph.D.
Professor Shokat is a pioneer in the development of chemical methods for investigating cellular signal transduction pathways—with a particular focus on protein kinases and lipid kinases. Dr. Shokat uses a combination of chemical synthesis and protein engineering to create uniquely traceable and regulatable kinases, allowing the function of over 100 different kinases to be uncovered across all disease areas including oncology, metabolism, and infectious disease.
Kevan is currently an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Professor in the Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology, where he also served as Department Chair from 2010-2014 at the University of California at San Francisco. He is also Professor in the Department of Chemistry at the University of California at Berkeley. After receiving his Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry at UC Berkeley with Professor Peter Schultz, and post-doctoral work in immunology at Stanford University with Professor Chris Goodnow, Kevan began his independent research career at Princeton University where he was promoted from Assistant to Associate Professor in four years. He has received numerous awards including being named a Fellow of several prestigious research foundations including the Pew Foundation, Searle Foundation, Sloan Foundation, Glaxo-Wellcome Foundation, and the Cotrell Foundation. He has also received the Eli Lilly Award, given to the most promising biological chemist in the country under the age of 37. He was inducted into the National Academy of Sciences (2010), the Institute of Medicine (2011), and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2011).
Kevan has successfully commercialized discoveries from his laboratory. His development of chemical genetic tools for tracking and validating protein kinase drug targets is licensed by Artemis-Taconic for target validation of kinases in multiple disease areas. In 2007 he co-founded Intellikine, Inc. to commercialize a series of PI3K and mTOR small molecule inhibitors for cancer and inflammatory disease. In four years Intellikine has progressed three compounds into Phase I including INK1197 (PI3Kδ)-now partnered with Infinity Pharmaceuticals, INK128 (mTOR), and INK1117 (PI3Kα). In December 2011, Intellikine was acquired by Takeda Pharmaceuticals. In 2013 he co-founded Araxes Pharmaceuticals in La Jolla, CA. Also in 2013 he co-founded eFFECTOR Pharmaceuticals in San Diego, CA.