Yale University

Waldemar Von Zedtwitz Professor of Immunobiology and Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Dr. Akiko Iwasaki is a Sterling Professor of Immunobiology and Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology at Yale and an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Professor Iwasaki received her Ph.D. in Immunology from the University of Toronto (1998) and completed her postdoctoral training at the National Institutes of Health before joining Yale’s faculty in 2000. She has received awards and honors, including the Burroughs Wellcome Fund Career Award, the Wyeth Lederle Young Investigator Award, the BD Biosciences Investigator Award, the Seymour & Vivian Milstein Award, the AAI Career Award, the Helen Dean King Award, the Elga R. Wasserman Courage, Clarity, and Leadership Award, and the Lupus Insight Prize Award. Professor Iwasaki has been a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator since 2014. She was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2018, the National Academy of Medicine in 2019, to the American Academy of Microbiology in 2020. In 2021, she was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the European Molecular Biology Organization Membership, and the HHMI Council Membership in 2021. She is currently the vice president of the American Association of Immunologists. Her research focuses on the mechanisms of immune defense against viruses at the mucosal surfaces, and the development of mucosal vaccine strategies. She is the co-Lead Investigator of the Yale COVID-19 Recovery Study and the Yale LISTEN study, aimed at understanding the pathophysiology of long COVID. Dr. Iwasaki is the inaugural director of the new Yale Center for Infection and Immunity. Dr. Iwasaki is at the forefront of the COVID-19 pandemic, with respect to research, science communication, and public service. She is quoted in numerous media outlets with expert insights and is considered one of the 50 top experts to trust during the pandemic. Dr. Iwasaki is also well known for her advocacy for women and underrepresented minorities in the science and medicine fields and has a large follower base on social media.