Life Sciences

J&J Honors MIT Scientist with Dr. Paul Janssen Award for Biomedical Research

Johnson & Johnson (J&J) has announced Robert Langer, Sc.D., of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) as the winner of the 2023 Dr. Paul Janssen Award for Biomedical Research. Dr. Langer was honored for his groundbreaking work in designing novel drug delivery systems that can deliver medications continuously, precisely, and at controlled rates over extended periods. His pioneering research into biomedical compounds for drug delivery has impacts on a wide range of medical technologies, including anticancer therapy, vaccine development, gene therapy and more.

“In a world that looks to science for solutions, it is our honor to recognize Dr. Langer for his many contributions at the leading edge of scientific innovation,” said William N. Hait, M.D., Ph.D., executive vice president, chief external innovation and medical officer for Johnson & Johnson. “The breadth and depth of Dr. Langer’s research, its implications and its impact on human health exemplify Dr. Paul Janssen’s legacy and spirit of innovation.”

Langer, who is a David H. Koch Institute Professor at MIT, was selected as the 2023 winner by an independent committee of world-renowned scientists. He joins 22 other scientists who have received the Dr. Paul Janssen Award since 2004, including eight who have gone on to win the Nobel Prize. Langer has written more than 1,570 articles and has over 1,400 issued and pending patents worldwide. His patents have been licensed or sublicensed to over 400 pharmaceutical, chemical, biotechnology and medical device companies.

“Among the dozens of nominations of deserving researchers, Dr. Robert Langer’s groundbreaking research stood out as the cornerstone of contemporary drug delivery technology, laying the groundwork for transformative therapies that have touched the lives of billions of patients already,” said Elaine Fuchs, Ph.D., Selection Committee Chair for the Dr. Paul Janssen Award.

“As I accept the esteemed Dr. Paul Janssen Award for Biomedical Research, I find myself reflecting on my humble beginnings and the invaluable support I’ve received from my family, students, patients and colleagues who have accompanied me on this extraordinary journey,” said Langer. “My thoughts extend to the dedicated scientists passionately immersed in their work, tirelessly exploring innovative drug delivery systems that have a profound impact on the lives of patients and the world of pharmaceutical innovation.”

About the Dr. Paul Janssen Award for Biomedical Research

Dr. Paul Janssen was one of the 20th century’s most gifted and passionate researchers. He helped save millions of lives through his contribution to the discovery and development of more than 80 medicines, four of which remain on the World Health Organization’s list of essential medicines.

The Dr. Paul Janssen Award for Biomedical Research was established by J&J in 2004 to honor the memory of Dr. Janssen. Since its inception, the award has recognized 23 outstanding scientists, eight of whom have gone on to win the Nobel Prize for the same work. Winners are chosen by an independent selection committee of the world’s most renowned scientists. The award includes a $200,000 prize.

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