Sally Kornbluth

Sally Kornbluth

President of MIT; Professor of Biology

Sally Kornbluth is President of MIT.




  • Graduate: PhD, 1989, Rockefeller University
  • Undergraduate: BA, 1982, Political Science, Williams College; BS, 1984, Genetics, Cambridge University

Research Summary

Sally Kornbluth is President of MIT. Before she closed her lab to focus on administration, her research focused on the biological signals that tell a cell to start dividing or to self-destruct — processes that are key to understanding cancer as well as various degenerative disorders. She has published extensively on cell proliferation and programmed cell death, studying both phenomena in a variety of organisms. Her research has helped to show how cancer cells evade this programmed death, or apoptosis, and how metabolism regulates the cell death process; her work has also clarified the role of apoptosis in regulating the duration of female fertility in vertebrates.

Honors and Awards

  • Member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 2020
  • Member, National Academy of Inventors, 2018
  • Member, National Academy of Medicine, 2013
  • Distinguished Faculty Award, Duke Medical Alumni Association, 2013
  • Basic Science Research Mentoring Award, Duke University School of Medicine, 2012

Previous Administrative Leadership Positions

  • Provost, Duke University, 2014 - 2022
  • Vice Dean for Basic Sciences, Duke University School of Medicine, 2006 - 2014
Photo credit: Gretchen Ertl