Advisory Committee

Randy Schekman (Chair)

Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Department of Molecular and Cell Biology
University of California, Berkeley


Dr. Randy Schekman is a Professor in the Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of California, Berkeley, and an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. He studied the enzymology of DNA replication as a graduate student with Arthur Kornberg at Stanford University. His current interest in cellular membranes developed during a postdoctoral period with S. J. Singer at the University of California, San Diego. Among his awards are the Gairdner International Award, the Albert Lasker Award in Basic Medical Research and the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, which he shared with James Rothman and Thomas Südhof. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Medicine, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, a Foreign Associate of the Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei, a Foreign Associate of the Royal Society of London and an Honorary Academician of the Academia Sinica. In 1999, he was elected President of the American Society for Cell Biology. From 2002-2017, he served as Editor-in-Chief of the Annual Reviews of Cell and Developmental Biology. From 2006 - 2011 he served as Editor-in-Chief of the Proceedings of the NAS. In 2011, he founded and until 2019 served as the Editor-in-Chief of the Open Access journal, eLife, sponsored by the HHMI, Wellcome Trust and the Max Planck Society. Beginning in 2019, Schekman became the scientific director of Aligning Science Across Parkinson’s Disease (ASAP), an international effort to identify and support basic research on the mechanisms of Parkinson’s Disease initiation and progression (

Research Interests

Schekman Labs' research is devoted to a molecular description of the process of membrane assembly and vesicular traffic in eukaryotic cells. Basic principles that emerged from these studies in yeast are now being applied to studies of genetic diseases of protein transport. For the past dozen years, his lab has turned to a biochemical analysis of traffic in mammalian cells, including of the pathways of collagen secretion, autophagosome formation, and unconventional secretion.  Of particular interest in clinical developments, he has decided to focus their attention on the mechanism of extracellular vesicle biogenesis with an emphasis on the means by which exosomes acquire a cell type-specific and highly sorted set of miRNAs.

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