Peter Kim is a CZ Biohub Senior Investigator, the Virginia & D.K. Ludwig Professor of Biochemistry at Stanford University School of Medicine, and an Institute Scholar of Stanford ChEM-H.
He discovered a fundamental component of how proteins cause many viral membranes to fuse with cells, including those of influenza, HIV-1, Ebola, RSV, and SARS-CoV-2. Kim has designed novel compounds to stop membrane fusion by HIV-1 and is known for pioneering efforts to create an AIDS vaccine based on similar principles. Kim was President of Merck Research Laboratories from 2003–2013 and oversaw development of more than 20 new medicines and vaccines, including JANUVIA, the first DPP-4 inhibitor for type 2 diabetes; GARDASIL, the first vaccine for the prevention of cervical cancer; ISENTRESS, the first HIV-1 integrase inhibitor; ZOSTAVAX, the first vaccine for the prevention of shingles; and KEYTRUDA, the first FDA-approved PD-1 immune checkpoint inhibitor for the treatment of cancer.
He received his bachelor’s degree in Chemistry from Cornell University and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry from Stanford University. He was then appointed a Whitehead Fellow and subsequently was a member of the Whitehead Institute, professor of biology at MIT, and an investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI).
Kim is an alumnus of Biohub’s Investigator Program and is currently a lead investigator in Biohub’s Infectious Disease initiative. He serves on the Medical Advisory Board of HHMI; the Scientific Advisory Board of the NIH Vaccine Research Center; and the Biology Department Visiting Committee of the MIT Corporation. Kim is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Medicine, and the National Academy of Engineering.