Biophysical Society Honors Kevin Gardner With 2023 Award for the Biophysics of Health and Disease

A schematic representation of belzutifan (spheres) and other types of molecules Gardner and his team have screened as part of their work (stick diagrams).
A schematic representation of belzutifan (spheres) and a selection of other small molecules that Gardner and his team screened (sticks) for binding and control of the human HIF-2alpha transcription factor as part of their work to identify inhibitors of this protein in their search for novel anti-cancer therapeutics. (Credit: Niki Barolini)


This month, the Biophysical Society named Professor Kevin Gardner as recipient of the 2023 Award for the Biophysics of Health and Disease. The award recognizes significant contributions to understanding the fundamental cause or pathogenesis of disease, and enabling treatment or prevention.

Gardner, who directs the Structural Biology Initiative at the Advanced Science Research Center at the Graduate Center (CUNY ASRC), was honored for his development and application of magnetic resonance methodology to understand the regulation mechanism of molecular switches. This led to the development of the cancer drug belzutifan, also known by the brand name Welireg, approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration last year. 

“The ultimate goal of biomedical research, no matter how fundamental, is to eventually have an impact on human health,” said Society President Gail Robertson, University of Wisconsin‐Madison, in an announcement. “Dr. Gardner has achieved this lofty goal. He has taken basic biophysical research to the bedside, leading to life‐saving technologies with real-world applications.”

Gardner will be honored at the Society’s 67th Annual Meeting in San Diego, California, in February 2023.