Skip to Main Content

Joe Howard, PhD

Eugene Higgins Professor of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry and Professor of Physics; Director, Quantitative Biology Institute

Contact Information

Joe Howard, PhD

Office Location

  • 266 Whitney Avenue, Ste YSB C-149
    New Haven, CT, 06511

Mailing Address

  • Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry

    P.O. Box 208114, 260 Whitney Ave

    New Haven, CT, 06520-8114

    United States

Appointments

Biography

Jonathon (Joe) Howard is the Eugene Higgins Professor of Molecular Biophysics & Biochemistry, a Professor of Physics, and the Director of the Quantitative Biology Institute at Yale University. He is best known for his research on the mechanical properties of motor proteins and the cytoskeleton, and the development of techniques for observing, measuring and manipulating individual biological molecules. In addition to research on purified kinesin motors and other microtubule-associated proteins, Dr. Howard studies a number of cellular systems in which force and motion play key roles. These include cilia and flagella, neuronal development, mitosis and mechanoreception in the ear and skin. Brought up in Australia, where he studied mathematics and neurobiology at the Australian National University, he has had a distinguished career in the United States—he was a professor at the University of Washington Medical School in Seattle—and in Germany, where he played a key role, as Director, in establishing the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden, one of the most successful research institutes in Europe. In 2013 he returned to the United States where he enjoys new research projects, teaching and writing.

Education & Training

  • PhD
    Australian National Univ, Neurobiology (1983)
  • BS
    Australian National Univ, Mathematics (1979)
  • Postdoctoral Fellow
    University of California, San Francisco
  • Postdoctoral Fellow
    University of Bristol

Activities

  • Alan J. Hunt Memorial Lecture
    Ann Arbor, United States 2015
  • Woods Hole Physiology Course
    Falmouth, United States 2015
  • Bragg Lecture
    Cambridge, United Kingdom 2014
  • Arthur K. Parpart Endowed Lecture
    Falmouth, United States 2014
  • Poincaré Seminar
    Paris, France 2009
  • George A. Feigen Memorial Lecture
    Stanford, United States 2006

Honors & Recognition

AwardAwarding OrganizationDate
FellowBiophysical Society2016
External MemberMax Planck Society, Institute for the Physics of Complex Systems2016
Pioneer AwardNational Institutes of Health2015
Eugene Higgins Professor of Molecular Biophysics & BiochemistryYale University2013
Timoshenko FellowMechanical Engineering, Stanford University2008
MemberEuropean Molecular Biology Organization2004
Scientific MemberMax Planck Society, Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics2000, 2014
MERIT AwardNational Institute of Arthritis & Musculoskeletal & Skin Diseases2000
FellowJohn Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation1996
Pew Scholar in the Biomedical SciencesPew Charitable Trusts1990
Sloan Research FellowAlfred P. Sloan Foundation1990
Australian National Undergraduate ScholarAustralian National University1976

Professional Service

OrganizationRoleDate
Center for Mechanobiology, SingaporeReview Panel, Chair2015 - Present
Center for Advancing Electronics Dresden, Dresden University of TechnologyScientific Advisory Board, Member2013 - Present
RIKEN Quantitative Biology Center (QBiC), Kobe/Osaka, JapanAdvisory Council, Chair2013 - 2017
RIKEN, Wako, JapanRIKEN Advisory Council, Member2013 - Present

Departments & Organizations