Michael Shepard
  • 2019 Lasker~DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award


American innovator in the field of biotechnology and pioneer in cancer research. Dr Shepard together with Dennis J. Slamon, and Axel Ullrich invented Herceptin—a targeted antibody therapy for breast cancer and won the 2019 Lasker~DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award

Education and Work Experience

1980-1992, Scientific Manager, Department of Pharmacological Sciences; Senior Scientist, Developmental Biology, Genentech, Inc.
1992-1997, Vice President, Research and Development; Chief Scientific Officer/Senior Director, Technology Evaluation, Canji/Shering-Plough Research Institute
2003-2008, Founder/President/Chief Scientific Officer, Receptor BioLogix,Inc.
2009-Present, VP, Research and Preclinical Development; Chief Scientific Officer; Consultant (Current), HALOZYME

Honors and Awards

1993, Member of President’s Cancer Panel
1996, Fellow of Kennedy Institute of Rheumatology
2007, Warren Alpert Prize
2019, Lasker~DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award

Major Academic Achievements

To date, over 500,000 women have been saved from aggressive breast cancer because of Dr. Shepard’s discovery of HER2 and development of Herceptin. Multiple research studies confirm overall survival of HER2+ cancer patients 37% higher when treated
with Herceptin plus chemotherapy; compared to patients given only chemotherapy.
At ten years after treatment, disease-free survival was 40% better in patients treated with Herceptin plus chemotherapy, compared to those treated only with chemotherapy. Among Shepard's other research accomplishments include: Bringing the first adenovirus gene therapy into clinical trials (for ovarian cancer); Creating small molecule cancer therapeutics, targeting cancer overexpressed following the inactivation of tumor suppressor genes;Pioneering the concept of ‘pan-HER’ inhibition (single drug deterring the EGFR, HER2, and HER3), etc.