Laura L. Kiessling
Laura Lee Kiessling|
September 21, 1960
Lake Mills, Wisconsin
Massachusetts Institute of Technology|
|Known for||Research on multivalent protein-carbohydrate interactions; carbohydrate polymers|
University of Wisconsin–Madison|
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Laura Lee Kiessling (born 21 September 1960) is an American chemist and the Novartis Professor of Chemistry at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Kiessling's research focuses on elucidating and exploiting interactions on the cell surface, especially those mediated by proteins binding to carbohydrates. Multivalent protein-carbohydrate interactions play roles in cell-cell recognition and signal transduction. Understanding and manipulating these interactions provides tools to study biological processes and design therapeutic treatments. Kiessling's interdisciplinary research combines organic synthesis, polymer chemistry, structural biology, and molecular and cell biology.
Kiessling earned a B.S. in Chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1983 and a Ph.D. in Chemistry from Yale University in 1989. At Yale, she worked with Stuart Schreiber to synthesize and study small molecules as probes of biological function. After earning her PhD, Kiessling spent two years at the California Institute of Technology as an American Cancer Society Postdoctoral Fellow, where she worked with Peter B. Dervan to study DNA recognition and cleavage.
In 1991, Kiessling joined the faculty of the University of Wisconsin–Madison, where she became the Steenbock Professor of Chemistry and the Laurens Anderson Professor of Biochemistry. While at UW-Madison, Kiessling also became the Director of the Keck Center for Chemical Genomics and the National Institutes of Health Chemistry-Biology Interface Training Program. In 2017, she moved to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as the Novartis Professor of Chemistry. as well as the editor-in-chief of ACS Chemical Biology.
Kiessling's contributions span the fields of organic synthesis, polymer chemistry, and molecular biology. She has made contributions to the synthesis and study of many biologically active molecules, including glycosyl donors, modified peptides, and glycopolymers. Kiessling's research has used these molecules to probe cell recognition and signal transduction processes (Figure 1). Her research has shown that multivalent ligands (molecules that possess multiple binding groups) can influence receptor-ligand binding mechanisms, activate signaling, and target specific immune responses. These discoveries have potential applications in targeted immunotherapy and disease treatment.
Kiessling has received a number of awards and honors in recognition of her research. She received a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship (popularly called the "MacArthur genius grant") in 1999. In 2007, Kiessling was inducted as a member of the United States National Academy of Sciences, and in 2017, she received the Tetrahedron Prize for Creativity in Organic Chemistry.
Kiessling is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences and the American Chemical Society, as well as an elected member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, American Philosophical Society, and American Academy of Microbiology. Since 2005, she has served as the founding editor-in-chief of ACS Chemical Biology. Kiessling is also the cofounder of Quintessence Biosciences, a company that is working to translate her technological advances into cures for various diseases. She has been selected as one of the fifty top research and development "Stars to Watch" by Industry Week.
Selected honors and awards
- 2017 Tetrahedron Prize for Creativity in Organic Chemistry
- 2017 Elected Member, American Philosophical Society
- 2016 Willard Gibbs Award, Chicago Section of the American Chemical Society
- 2014 ACS Alfred Bader Award in Bioinorganic and Bioorganic Chemistry
- 2010 Fellow, American Chemical Society
- 2008 Guggenheim Fellowship
- 2007 Elected Member, National Academy of Sciences 
- 2007 Elected Member, American Academy of Microbiology
- 2007 Garvan–Olin Medal, American Chemical Society
- 2003 Elected Member, American Academy of Arts & Sciences
- 2003 Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science
- 1999–2004 John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Fellowship
- 1999 Arthur C. Cope Scholar Award
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- "THE ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTH PRESENTATION OF THE WILLARD GIBBS MEDAL (FOUNDED BY WILLIAM A. CONVERSE) TO PROFESSOR LAURA KIESSLING SPONSORED BY THE CHICAGO SECTION OF THE AMERICAN CHEMICAL SOCIETY FRIDAY, MAY 20, 2016" (PDF). The Chemical Bulletin. May 20, 2016. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
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- Laura L. Kiessling (ed.). "ACS Chemical Biology" (PDF). Pubs.acs.org. Retrieved 2016-07-02.
- Hinklin, Ronald; Kiessling, Laura (2001). "Glycosyl Sulfonylcarbamates: New Glycosyl Donors with Tunable Reactivity". Journal of the American Chemical Society. 123: 3379.
- He, Ye; Hinklin, Ronald; Chang, Jiyoung; Kiessling, Laura (2004). "Stereoselective N-Glycosylation by Staudinger Ligation". Organic Letters. 6: 4479–4482.
- Young, Travis; Kiessling, Laura (2002). "A Strategy for the Synthesis of Sulfated Peptides". Angewandte Chemie. 41: 3449–3451.
- Strong, Laura; Kiessling, Laura (1999). "A General Synthetic Route to Defined, Biologically Active Multivalent Arrays". Journal of the American Chemical Society. 121: 6193–6196.
- Pontrello, Jason; Allen, Matthew; Underbakke, Eric; Kiessling, Laura (2005). "Solid-Phase Synthesis of Polymers Using the Ring-Opening Metathesis Polymerization". Journal of the American Chemical Society. 127: 14536–14537.
- May, John; Splain, Rebecca; Brotschi, Christine; Kiessling, Laura (2009). "A tethering mechanism for length control in a processive carbohydrate polymerization". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 106: 11851–11865.
- "Multivalent Carbohydrates As New and Powerful Probes of Signal Transduction | MIT Department of Chemistry". chemistry.mit.edu. Retrieved 2018-08-22.
- Gestwicki, Jason; Cairo, Christopher; Strong, Laura; Oetjen, Karolyn; Kiessling, Laura (2002). "Influencing Receptor−Ligand Binding Mechanisms with Multivalent Ligand Architecture". Journal of the American Chemical Society. 124: 14922–14933.
- Gestwicki, Jason; Kiessling, Laura (2002). "Inter-receptor communication through arrays of bacterial chemoreceptors". Nature. 415: 81–84.
- Courtney, Adam; Puffer, Erik; Pontrello, Jason; Yang, Zhi-Qiang; Kiessling, Laura (2009). "Sialylated multivalent antigens engage CD22 in trans and inhibit B cell activation". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 106: 2500–2505.
- "Researchers Open New Line of Attack on Tuberculosis | NSF - National Science Foundation". www.nsf.gov. Retrieved 2018-08-22.
- Carlson, Coby; Mowery, Patricia; Owen, Robert; Dykhuizen, Emily; Kiessling, Laura (2007). "Selective Tumor Cell Targeting Using Low-Affinity, Multivalent Interactions". ACS Chemical Biology. 2: 119–127.
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- Stanchak, Jesse. "ACS Chemical Biology EIC Laura L. Kiessling Wins 2016 Gibbs Award". ACS Axial. Retrieved 2018-07-30.
- "ACS 2014 National Award Winners | September 9, 2013 Issue - Vol. 91 Issue 36 | Chemical & Engineering News". cen.acs.org. Retrieved 2016-10-09.
- "John Simon Guggenheim Foundation | Fellows". Gf.org. 2014-06-20. Retrieved 2016-07-02.
- "American Chemical Society - American Chemical Society". Portal.acs.org. Retrieved 2016-07-02.
- "Arthur C. Cope Scholar Awards". Portal.acs.org. Retrieved 2018-07-30.