2015 Outstanding Career Achievement: Kelvin J. A. Davies

Kelvin DaviesProf. Kelvin J. A. Davies

Kelvin J. A. Davies, Ph.D., D.Sc. is the James E. Birren Chair and Dean of Faculty at the University of Southern California’s, School of Gerontology. He is also Professor of Molecular and Computational Biology in USC’s College of Letters, Arts, and Sciences. Professor Davies was born and raised in London, England and is a dual citizen of Great Britain and the U.S.A. Educated at London and Liverpool Universities, the University of Wisconsin, Harvard University, and the University of California at Berkeley, he was previously a faculty member at Harvard University and Harvard Medical School. Before moving to USC in 1996, Professor Davies was Chairman of the Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology at the Albany Medical College, where he was also professor of Molecular Medicine. Deeply involved in research into oxidative stress, free radicals, and Aging, Professor Davies is the (founding) Editor-in-Chief of the premier scientific journal, Free Radical Biology & Medicine. He pioneered the study of protein oxidation and proteolysis during oxidative stress, and gene expression during stress-adaptation. He uncovered the role of free radicals in mitochondrial adaptation to exercise. He discovered five stress-genes including RCAN1 which regulates calcineurin and whose mis-regulation contributes to Alzheimer disease, Down syndrome, and Huntington disease. Davies demonstrated that impaired induction of proteasome and mitochondrial lon protease genes contributes to senescence and severely diminished stress-resistance in aging. He has pioneered the concept of impaired ‘Adaptive Homeostasis’ as a major factor in aging. Professor Davies is past President of the Oxygen Club of California, the Society for Free Radical Biology & Medicine, and the International Society for Free Radical Research. He was also founding President of the California Philharmonic Orchestra. The organizer of over 20 scientific meetings and conferences, he has been chairman of both the Oxygen Radicals in Biology Gordon Conference and the Oxidative Stress and Disease Gordon Conference. Davies has been awarded seven honorary doctoral degrees and professorships from European, South American, and Asian Universities. He has won numerous medals, prizes, distinguished/lifetime scientific achievement awards, and mentoring awards; and has been elected a Fellow of no less than seven national/international scientific societies including the Royal Institution and the Royal Society of Medicine. Kelvin Davies was knighted as a Chevalier de l’Ordre National du Mérite de France (Knight of the National Order of Merit of France) in 2012 by French President Nicolas Sarkozy for his services to science, humanity, and international cooperation.