Alanna Schepartz, Ph.D., the Milton Harris ’29 Ph.D. Professor of Chemistry, has been named director of the Chemical Biology Institute on the West Campus. Schepartz was chair of the faculty advisory committee that met to define and develop the institute over the past year.
Schepartz will retain her position as professor in the Department of Chemistry and the Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology and will split her time between the West Campus and Science Hill.
The institute will promote innovation at the intersections of different scientific disciplines—not only in chemistry and biology but also in engineering, physics, and medicine. Chemical biology involves both synthetic biology—the design and synthesis of new molecules to tackle problems that arise in biology and medicine—and the development of new reactions, materials, and processes inspired by those found in nature.
Schepartz came to Yale in 1988. Over the past 23 years, her lab has broken fresh ground in designing and developing new molecules as tools to monitor, manipulate, or mimic interactions between and among proteins in live cells. Her lab’s work in developing the first synthetic protein was named one of 2007’s “most important research advances” in chemistry by Chemical & Engineering News.