Accelerating Breakthrough Discoveries into Medicines

Jonathan Powell, MD, PhD

Jonathan Powell, MD, PhD

Jonathan Powell, MD, PhD, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Pharmacology and Molecular Sciences Graduate Program in Immunology at The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD.

Dr. Powell’s laboratory focuses on understanding T-cell biology. Through a serendipitous finding, his lab has revealed a potentially new line of inquiry regarding the development of a novel class of drugs – klk1b22 – that treat Type II diabetes, obesity and hyperlipidemia by reversing glucose intolerance, generating brown fat, promoting weight loss and lowering triglycerides.

Dr. Powell’s work has resulted in a number of peer-reviewed research articles in Nature Immunology, Immunity, Blood, The Journal of Immunology and the New England Journal of Medicine. His work has resulted in three patents related to the regulation of molecules impacting T- cell function. Most recently, the lab’s efforts to understand the cellular, biochemical and molecular mechanisms of T-cell activation, differentiation and tolerance has led to series of studies identifying mTOR as playing a critical role in integrating signals from the immune microenvironment. These studies have also provided important links between T cell activation, differentiation and function and metabolism.

Prior to joining the faculty at Johns Hopkins, Dr. Powell was a post-doctoral fellow in the laboratory of Ronald Schwartz, MD, PhD, Chief of the Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Immunology in the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Baltimore, MD.

He received his undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, and his MD and PhD from Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Ga. His post-graduate clinical training included the Osler Internal Medicine Residence Program at Johns Hopkins and fellowship training in hematology-oncology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

Dr. Powell is a physician researcher at The Johns Hopkins Hospital and is the principal investigator on a number of NIH-funded projects. Dr. Powell has contributed book chapters and monographs, and he is an ad-hoc reviewer for several professional journals, including the Journal of Immunology, Blood, Journal of Clinical Investigation, Nature and Science.

Harrington Project

The Harrington Discovery Institute is the nonprofit arm of the Harrington Project for Discovery & Development, an international initiative supporting breakthrough research by physician-scientists. The Project is a new and powerful approach to address some of the challenges hindering advancement of medicine today.

The Harrington Grant is an important part of the overall pharmaceutical research initiative created by The Harrington Project.