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Dr. Cherukuri Murali Krishna

1984 - Ph.D - Physics Senior Investigator @ National Institutes of Health, USA

Dr. Cherukuri Murali Krishna graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Physics from Loyola College in 1976 and a Master’s degree in Physics in 1978 from Andhra University, Waltair, Andhra Pradesh. In 1984, he obtained his Ph.D. in Physics from Indian Institute of Technology Madras with guidance from Professor Sankaran Subramanian (Department of Chemistry).

After his Ph.D 1984, he joined the National Cancer Institute (NCI), NIH, a US Federal Government establishment the world’s largest and premier clinical research establishment, as a post-doctoral fellow. He went on to become one of the youngest tenured investigator in that institution in 1993, even while he was on a J1 visa. Since 1993, he is the head of the Biophysics Department at the National Cancer Institute, NIH. He was inducted into the Senior Biomedical Research Service (Title 42 appointment) of the National Institutes of Health in June 2006 (Executive level position created for scientists who are considered by their peers to be outstanding in their work, and who are engaged in peer-reviewed, original, biomedical research). During 2011-15, he served as the Director at the Image Probe Development Center, National Heart, Lung, Blood Institute, NIH. He served as the Chairperson of the NCI Tenure Selection Committee. He has been a member of the editorial board of several high impact journals including “Magnetic Resonance in Medicine” and “Cancer Research”. He has published over 200 scientific publications, inventor in several patents in the fields of cancer treatment and cancer imaging, some of which have been licensed for commercialization.

Dr. Cherukuri is a member of Scientific Advisory Board for ACERT, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York and Dartmouth Medical School, Department of Radiology. He is a voting member of US Government Interagency Policy Committee for Helium 3 allotments. He served as a Japan Society for Promotion of Science Invitational Professor in 2005. He was awarded the NIH Director’s Merit Award in 2011, 2012 and 2015. He was awarded the silver medal of the International Magnetic Resonance Society in 2015.

He translated his imaging research to the clinic to profile tumors in patients to guide precision/tailored therapies. His clinical MRI research group has capabilities available in only a handful of academic medical centers in the world. He leads a team in cancer imaging which is considered to be among the top 5 in the world. Starting as a physicist and then mastering chemical spectroscopy, Dr. Cherukuri has applied the same to cancer research with a view to unravelling molecular and mechanistic basis of tissue redox status, cancer pathophysiology and metabolic profile by Magnetic Resonance Imaging. He has trained dozens of physicians, scientists who went on to be leaders in their institutions.

For the excellence achieved in technological innovation applied to cancer research, IIT Madras and its alumni are proud to confer this award upon Dr. Cherukuri Murali Krishna.

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