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Keith Elkon, M.D., CIIID Associate Director, CIIID Translation Core Leader


Keith Elkon, M.D. is Professor of Medicine and Immunology and Co-Director of the CIIID at the University of Washington, Seattle. Dr. Elkon received his medical degree from the University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. He received postdoctoral training at the Hammersmith Hospital, London and at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York where he worked for 20 years. Dr. Elkon was appointed as Head, Division of Rheumatology, at the University of Washington in 2001.

Dr. Elkon's research objective is to better define the molecular basis for systemic autoimmune diseases such as lupus (SLE). He has made a number of contributions to the identification of autoantibody specificities in SLE. Since 1994, Dr Elkon's laboratory has focused on pathways of apoptosis and the processing of apoptotic cells showing how defects in these pathways lead to immune responses to self. Current studies focus on how cell debris, particularly nucleic acids, lead to inflammation and type 1 interferon expression. He has also pioneered therapeutic strategies to prevent nucleic acid stimulation of inflammation.

Dr. Elkon has been on the editorial boards of many journals including Arthritis and Rheumatism, Lupus, Autoimmunity, Clinical and Experimental Rheumatology, Arthritis Research and Therapy, Journal of Experimental Medicine, Journal of Cytokine & Interferon Research, Frontiers of B cell Biology, and Frontiers of Innate Immunity. He is currently Associate Editor of the Journal of Immunology. He served on numerous NIH Study Sections as well as the Lupus Research Institute Scientific Advisory Board, National Arthritis Foundation Medical and Scientific Advisory Board. He is a past president of the Henry Kunkel Society. Dr. Elkon has served on numerous National and International Grant Review Agencies and has received many honors, including invited speaker at the 100th Anniversary of the Nobel Prizes, a NIH Research Career Development Award, and is a recipient of the University of Washington CoMotion Presidential Innovation Fellow Award. He has published extensively with 230 original manuscripts, 40 editorials and reviews, and 27 book chapters. He has 6 patents approved or pending and has helped to spin out three startup companies from UW: Resolve Therapeutics, Theripion and Amdax Therapeutics. A biologic produced by Resolve Therapeutics, RSLV132, is currently in Phase II clinical trials for the treatment of Lupus.