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Morimoto Named Interim Executive Director of CBC

Richard Morimoto

Richard Morimoto, the Bill and Gayle Cook Professor of Biology and director of Northwestern’s Rice Institute for Biomedical Research

Northwestern University’s Richard Morimoto has been named interim executive director of the Chicago Biomedical Consortium (CBC), effective Nov. 1.

Morimoto is taking over for James E. Audia, who after two successful years of leadership at CBC, will return to work in the private sector.

“I am very honored to be asked to serve as the steward of the CBC during this transition,” says Morimoto. “I believe this consortium is stimulating collaboration among Chicago-area scientists that will transform research at the frontiers of biomedicine, and I look forward to continuing that collaboration with faculty across Northwestern University, the University of Chicago and the University of Illinois at Chicago to maintain the momentum of the CBC.”

Morimoto is the Bill and Gayle Cook Professor of Biology and director of the Rice Institute for Biomedical Research in Northwestern’s Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences. Research in Morimoto’ lab addresses a fundamental aspect of biology known as protein homeostasis, or proteostasis, the processes by which cells maintain protein vitality for good overall health. Failure in these quality control processes is the basis of hundreds of human diseases, including cystic fibrosis, cancer, metabolic diseases, and neurodegenerative diseases.

The mission of the CBC is to stimulate collaboration among Northwestern University, the University of Chicago, and the University of Illinois at Chicago in order to facilitate scientific and medical research beyond the scope of a single institution or discipline and advance and redefine biomedical research. Founded in 2006, the CBC has received $65.5 million in funding to date from the Searle Funds at The Chicago Community Trust. So far, researchers and projects funded by the CBC have earned more than $702 million in additional funding, with a total estimated economic impact exceeding $2.5 billion for Chicago’s economy.