Professor David R. Walt

Hansjörg Wyss Professor of Biologically Inspired Engineering
Harvard Medical School
Professor of Pathology
Department of Pathology-Brigham and Women’s Hospital
Core Faculty-Wyss Institute for Bioinspired Engineering at Harvard University
HHMI Professor

Dr. Walt is the Hansjörg Wyss Professor of Bioinspired Engineering at Harvard Medical School, is Professor of Pathology at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, is a Core Faculty Member of the Wyss Institute at Harvard University, is Associate Member at the Broad Institute, is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor, and is co-Director of the Mass General Brigham Center for COVID Innovation. Dr. Walt pioneered the use of microwell arrays for single-molecule detection and genetic measurements, which has revolutionized the process of genetic and proteomic analysis, enabling the cost of DNA sequencing and genotyping to plummet nearly a millionfold in the last decade. Walt is the Scientific Founder of Illumina Inc., Quanterix Corp., and has co-founded multiple other life sciences startups including Ultivue, Inc., Arbor Biotechnologies, Sherlock Biosciences, Vizgen, Inc., and Torus Biosciences. His lab develops new diagnostics tools and new biomarker assay technologies based on single molecule detection that can address unmet clinical needs in diagnostics.  The lab is focused on early detection of breast cancer, detection of active tuberculosis and other infectious diseases, and diagnosis of neurodegenerative diseases. His lab has also been deeply involved in developing new tools to understand and diagnose COVID-19.  Dr. Walt’s lab also pursues fundamental research on single enzyme molecules to provide insight into enzyme mechanisms. He has received numerous national and international awards and honors for his fundamental and applied work in the field of optical microwell arrays and single molecules including the 2021 Kabiller Prize in Nanoscience and Nanomedicine. He is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Engineering, the U.S. National Academy of Medicine, a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors, and is inducted in the US National Inventors Hall of Fame.