Dr. Mechoulam is a pioneer in the field of cannabis research and a discoverer of the endocannabinoid system. Dr. Mechoulam is an Israeli organic chemist and professor of Medicinal Chemistry at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel. He was among the first to complete the total synthesis of the major plant cannabinoids Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol, cannabidiol, cannabigerol, and others. Dr. Mechoulam also played a key role in the isolation of the first described endocannabinoid anandamide.
Prof. Mechoulam received his Masters Degree in Biochemistry from the Hebrew University in 1952 and his Ph.D. from the Weizmann Institute in 1958 where he studied under Professor F. Sondheimer. He completed his postdoctoral research at the Rockefeller Institute. Dr. Mechoulam is currently with the Institute for Drug Research at the Faculty of Medicine at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. He is former Rector of the University and is a member of the Israel Academy of Sciences.
Dr. Mechoulam has received many honours, including honorary doctorates from Spain and USA, the Israel Prize in 2000 and the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006. In 2012, he received the Rothschild Prize. His research interests are in the field of the chemistry and biological activity of natural products and medicinal agents. His main contributions are in the field of the constituents of cannabis and the endogenous cannabinoids found in the brain and the periphery. He has published extensively on their pharmacological activities.
Robert S. Langer, Ph.D.
Dr. Langer is the David H. Koch Institute Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (“MIT”). He is a prolific biotechnologist, engineer, entrepreneur, and inventor who is widely recognized in biotechnology, especially in the fields of drug delivery systems. Dr. Langer has over 1,100 issued and pending patents worldwide; his patents have been licensed or sublicensed to over 300 pharmaceutical, chemical, biotechnology, and medical device companies.
Dr. Langer has received over 220 major awards. He is one of four living individuals to have received both the U.S. National Medal of Science and the U.S. National Medal of Technology and Innovation. He also received the Charles Stark Draper Prize, considered the equivalent of the Nobel Prize for engineers, the Millennium Prize, the world’s largest technology prize, the Priestley Medal, the highest award of the American Chemical Society, the Wolf Prize in Chemistry, the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences, and the Kyoto Prize, among many others.
Dr. Langer served as a member of the U.S. FDA’s SCIENCE Board from 1995-2002 and as its Chairman from 1999-2002. He previously served as a director of Momenta Pharmaceuticals from 2001 to 2009, Wyeth Pharmaceuticals from 2004 to 2009, and Millipore Corporation from 2009 to 2010.
Dr. Langer has received honorary doctorates from 24 universities globally, including Harvard University, the Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, Yale University, and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Israel). He received his Bachelor’s Degree from Cornell University in 1970 and his Sc.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1974.