AIChE has presented its inaugural Langer Prize for Innovation and Entrepreneurial Excellence to César de la Fuente, Presidential Assistant Professor at the Univ. of Pennsylvania. The fellowship — administered by AIChE’s Center for Entrepreneuring Excellence and endowed by the AIChE Foundation — is named for biomedical pioneer Robert Langer of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
More on the Langer Prize
The Langer Prize provides an unrestricted grant to enable creative researchers and engineering entrepreneurs to tackle high-risk, high-impact challenges with the potential of achieving game-changing innovations. De la Fuente received the Langer Prize on Nov. 10 at the 2019 AIChE Annual Meeting in Orlando, FL.
De la Fuente's work
An innovator in the computerization of biological systems, de la Fuente leads the Univ. of Pennsylvania’s Machine Biology group, where he draws upon protein design, synthetic biology, bioengineering, microbiology, and computational biology to devise new therapies for biomedical problems such as antibiotic resistance, infectious diseases, cancer, and microbiome engineering. His discoveries have yielded numerous patents and more than 70 publications.
In 2019, de la Fuente was recognized by MIT Technology Review as one of the world’s top innovators for “digitizing evolution to make better antibiotics.” He was also named a “Top-10-Under-40” honoree by Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News and received the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers’ Young Investigator Award.