Meet the 2019 Laureates: John J. Kopchick, PhD

John Kopchick

John J. Kopchick, PhD

Outstanding Innovation Award

John J. Kopchick is an internationally recognized leader in the growth hormone (GH) field. Dr. Kopchick is a Goll-Ohio Eminent Scholar and Distinguished Professor of Molecular Biology in the Department of Biomedical Sciences at the Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine and in the Edison Biotechnology Institute at Ohio University.

He received his PhD in 1980 from the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Texas. He then performed postdoctoral studies in molecular virology at the Roche Institute of Molecular Biology and later was a group leader in molecular medicine at Merck & Co. Dr. Kopchick and his group were the first to discover and characterize GH receptor antagonists, an accomplishment for which he and Ohio University were awarded several U.S. and European patents. He was instrumental in founding a company, Sensus, which applied his research to the development of an FDA-approved drug (Pegvisomant) for patients with acromegaly. He and his group also generated a GH receptor gene disrupted mouse, which has the longest lifespan of any laboratory mouse strain.

His ability to engage a wide variety of disciplines is illustrated by his extensive and meaningful collaborations around the globe.

Dr. Kopchick has published more than 350 scientific articles, mentored countless trainees, and serves, or has served, on the editorial boards of Endocrinology, Molecular Endocrinology, Growth Hormone & IGF-1 Research, Pituitary, and The Journal of Biological Chemistry. He served as president of the Growth Hormone Research Society and still serves on its Council. He has received many awards including the British Endocrine Society Transatlantic Award, AMVETS Silver Helmet Award, along with two honorary doctoral degrees. His ability to engage a wide variety of disciplines is illustrated by his extensive and meaningful collaborations around the globe and was pivotal in his efforts to get Pegvisomant to clinical use. Importantly, his research continues to refine our understanding of the molecular aspects of how GH influences growth, diabetes, and aging.


Derek LeRoith, MD, PhD, is professor of medicine and the current chief of the Hilda and J. Lester Gabrilove, MD Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Bone Disease and director of the Metabolism Institute of the Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York, and served as chair of the Endocrine Society’s Annual Meeting Steering Committee.


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