Alanna Schepartz obtained her undergraduate education in chemistry at the State University of New York, Albany. She earned a Ph.D. from Columbia University under the direction of Ronald Breslow, and spent two years as an NIH Postdoctoral Fellow at Caltech working with Peter Dervan. In 1988, she joined the faculty at Yale University. She was promoted to the rank of Professor in 1995, named the Milton Harris ’29 Ph.D. Professor in 2000, and in 2017 was named a Sterling Professor, Yale’s highest faculty honor. In 2019 Professor Schepartz and her laboratory moved to the University of California, Berkeley where she is currently the C.Z. and Irmgard Chu Distinguished Chair of Chemistry and Professor of Molecular and Cell Biology.
Alanna Schepart’z research group is broadly interested in understanding the chemistry that governs how complex cellular machines function, devising tools to probe that function, and applying that knowledge to design or discover new molecules–both small and large–with unique or useful properties. She is particularly well known for pioneering and creative development and application of -and -peptides to explore and expand the chemistry in biology. Her honors include a Packard Fellowship in Science and Engineering, an NSF Presidential Young Investigator Award, the Eli Lilly Award in Biological Chemistry, an ACS Cope Scholar Award, the ACS Chemical Biology Prize, the Ralph F. Hirschmann Award in Peptide Chemistry, the Ronald Breslow Award for Achievement in Biomimetic Chemistry, the Frank H. Westheimer Prize, and the Wheland Medal. She is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences.