Awards and Honors

Chad A. Mirkin to Receive 2023 Paul Terasaki Innovation Award

February 21, 2023

The Terasaki Institute for Biomedical Innovation (TIBI) is pleased to announce Professor Chad A. Mirkin of Northwestern University as the recipient of their 2023 Paul Terasaki Innovation Award. The award will be presented at TIBI’s inaugural Terasaki Innovation Summit, to be held March 8-10, 2023, at the UCLA Meyer & Renee Luskin Center.

The award was created in memory of Dr. Paul I. Terasaki, a pioneer in the field of organ transplant research and innovation, who established the original Terasaki Institute. The award recognizes outstanding achievement in the field of biomedical innovation through research, education, industry, translation, or clinical practice. This year’s recipient was chosen from several exceptional candidates after rigorous evaluation by the Terasaki Scientific Advisory Board.

In 1996, Chad Mirkin, Ph.D., made a groundbreaking discovery of spherical nucleic acid (SNA) technology, a process which uses nanoparticles to arrange DNA and RNA into spherical, specifically oriented, yet modular, structures. These structures confer unique chemical, biological, and physical properties that carry enormous implications for use in the biomedical and material science fields.

Accordingly, Dr. Mirkin has leveraged SNA’s potential for a staggering number of medical applications, developing advanced, high-throughput technologies and commercial products for cancer treatments, gene regulation, immunotherapies, and many types of biodiagnoses.

In addition, Dr. Mirkin’s entrepreneurial and collaborative skills have led to the formation of many companies which have successfully facilitated the translation of his innovations into high-impact products and technologies which far outperform conventional clinical tools.

Dr. Mirkin also has an admirable commitment to education, and he has trained hundreds of students and postdoctoral researchers. He is an award-winning teacher and has incorporated fundamental concepts from his research into his college courses and has created imaginative educational programs for broad audiences, including lay people and young students.

“Professor Mirkin embodies the very essence of what we would like to recognize with the Paul Terasaki Innovation Award,” said Ali Khademhosseini, TIBI’s Director and CEO. “We are extremely pleased and honored to present him with this award.”


About the Terasaki Institute for Biomedical Innovation

The Terasaki Institute for Biomedical Innovation is accelerating the pace of translational research by supporting the world’s leading scientists with an open, entrepreneurial environment for bioengineering new materials, biological models, and advanced technologies to address critical challenges to the health of the planet and its people. The Institute’s worldwide collaborations with academic, clinical, and entrepreneurial partners provide a rich foundation for translating innovations to the real world.