Society for Biological Engineering Chair Receives John Fritz Medal | AIChE

Society for Biological Engineering Chair Receives John Fritz Medal

May 6, 2013

Contact:  Danielle Gross
Phone:    (717) 214-2200

The Society for Biological Engineering (SBE) has announced that its chair, Professor Gregory Stephanopoulos of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), has received the 2013 John Fritz Medal. The award, presented by the American Association of Engineering Societies (AAES), recognizes Stephanopoulos’ defining contributions to the field of metabolic engineering and the bio-based economy. Many consider the Fritz Medal, established in 1902, to be the highest award in the engineering profession. It is presented for "outstanding scientific or industrial achievements."

Stephanopoulos’ work has bridged reaction engineering with biochemistry and molecular and cell biology. He has played a central role in the adoption of biological production platforms by the chemical and pharmaceutical industries, enabling the economic production of significant life-saving products. 
June Wispelwey, executive director of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE), SBE’s parent organization, said, “Dr. Stephanopoulos is one of the fathers of metabolic engineering.” She added, “He is recognized by his peers in the biotechnology community not only as a leader, but as a visionary.” She further explained: “Dr. Stephanopoulos has been instrumental in transferring lab technologies to industrial processes, and founding start-up companies to produce antimicrobial peptides and biofuels.”

Stephanopoulos received his BS in chemical engineering from the National Technical University of Athens, an MS from the University of Florida, and a PhD from the University of Minnesota.  He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a fellow of the AIChE and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

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Established by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) in 2004, the Society for Biological Engineering (SBE) is a technological community for engineers and applied scientists integrating biology with engineering. Members of SBE come from a broad spectrum of industries and disciplines and share in SBE’s mission of realizing the benefits of bioprocessing, biomedical and biomolecular applications. For more information, visit

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