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David Wilkes

David Wilkes

IU School of Medicine
March 2008

Whether he's in his laboratory, his classroom or on his bicycle, David Wilkes knows how to scale mountains.

In the classroom, Wilkes - the Dr. Calvin H. English Professor of Medicine - is regularly chosen by his student as one of IUPUI's top faculty members, and also serves as the director of the Center for Immunobiology in the IU School of Medicine (IUSM). His work also has earned him visiting appointments at such universities as Johns Hopkins, Virginia, Penn, Northwestern and Pittsburgh.

In the laboratory, Wilkes' expertise has garnered him world-wide attention in research fields such as lung disease and sarcoidosis (the formation of nodules especially in the lymph nodes, bones, and skin, as well as the lungs). His renown has made him a valued member of the national advisory council in the National Institutes of Health's institute of allergy and infectious diseases.

Wilkes likes to enhance his own research work by shaping the careers of future researchers, mentoring the students who are gaining invaluable experience at the threshold of their careers. His own experience in the Harold Amos Medical Faculty Development Program (formerly run by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation) make him an eager participant in the program, the same willingness that earned him IUPUI’s Alvin S. Bynum Mentoring Award.

On his bike, the cycling enthusiast has tested his two-wheel skills against the mountain roads of the Alps; on the home front, he also enjoys plying his skills as a chef in the family kitchen.

Now Wilkes has a new challenge before him: entrepreneur. He and fellow IUSM faculty member Michael J. Klemsz have launched ImmuneWorks LLC, one of the many products of the Indiana Life Sciences Initiative that is reshaping the state’s economic future. The product-based biotechnology company is developing therapeutics and diagnostic tests for patients with pulmonary conditions, especially targeting molecules that will help prevent rejection of lung transplants.

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