Kurt M. Bohren, PhD MS MEd
Dr. Bohren received his PhD in biochemistry from the University of Berne (Switzerland) in 1986. He was invited to do a postdoctoral training in molecular biology at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. He subsequently established the existence of the aldo-keto reductase superfamily in 1989 with a JBC paper that has been cited over 350 times. In 1992 he successfully crystallized recombinant human aldose reductase, competing with NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration), which was unable to obtain high-quality crystal of this protein in space during a Columbia shuttle mission in the same year. The β8α8 structure of aldose reductase, an enzyme thought to be involved in diabetic complications, established a new NADPH-binding motif for oxidoreductases, and was the first structure ever solved for the aldo-keto reductase superfamily. For this work Dr Bohren received a Career Development Award from the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation International. Fruitful collaborations with academic and industrial scientists led to many more highly-cited papers (over 2400 citations). Positions in academia and industry shaped Dr. Bohren‘s multiple areas of expertise such as metabolomics, mechanistic enzymology, protein engineering (proteomics) and production, assay development, gene regulation, diabetes, bone and cartilage diseases (osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis), and teaching.