La Jolla Institute of Immunology
Shane Crotty. Photo credit: Courtesy, La Jolla Institute of Immunology

Vaccine expert Shane Crotty has been appointed Chief Scientific Officer of the La Jolla Institute for Immunology, where he will assume the role Friday.

Crotty will lead the institute’s overall scientific strategy, as well as oversee research operations to support the success of the institute’s initiatives.

“Shane is an insightful and creative thinker, with an exceptional breadth and depth of knowledge. He deeply understands all the research of the institute and the opportunities that it creates for human health,” said Erica Ollmann Saphire, the institue’s president and CEO.

She also credited him with “visionary leadership and foresight” that became “apparent as the COVID-19 pandemic unfolded and his collaborations guided vaccine efforts worldwide.”

Crotty is recognized as a leader in vaccine research who applied his expertise to dissect the human immune response to SARS-CoV-2 as the COVID-19 outbreak evolved into a full-blown pandemic.

His findings were published in a series of high-impact papers that were lauded in congressional and White House hearings and helped inform public health measures at the federal level. 

“I am incredibly honored to have been selected to help guide the scientific direction of (the institute),” Crotty said. “We are at an inflection point in our understanding of the immune system’s central role in both health and disease and I can’t think of a better place to be … during this exciting time in immunology.”

Crotty has been the recipient of many awards and honors, most recently the AAI-BioLegend Herzenberg Award for B Cell Research, the Cancer Research Institute’s Award for New Discoveries in Immunology and a 2021 National Institutes of Health MERIT Award,

He also has been elected to the American Academy of Microbiology and the American Association for the Advancement of Science, while being named a Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences.

It has held a spot on Clarivate’s list of “Highly Cited Researchers,” those among the top 1% based on their scientific impact, for each of the last seven years.