Mikhail Shapiro

Hertz Fellow: Mikhail Shapiro

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Area of Study

Biological Engineering, Neural Imaging

Fellowship Years

2004 - 2008

Mikhail G. Shapiro, PhD, is an assistant professor at the California Institute of Technology. Previously, he was a Miller Research Fellow in Bioengineering and Molecular & Cell Biology at the University of California at Berkeley. His research is focused on genetically engineered sensors and actuators of neural activity using magnetic resonance imaging, ultrasound and infrared light. Dr. Shapiro received his PhD in biological engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with co-advisers Robert Langer and Alan Jasanoff and his BSc in neuroscience from Brown University. He conducted post-doctoral research in biophysics at the University of Chicago with Francisco Bezanilla.

Among his research accomplishments, Dr. Shapiro developed the first genetically engineered functional reporters for magnetic resonance imaging and discovered a fundamental mechanism by which infrared light stimulates neurons. In addition to his research, Dr. Shapiro has been a co-founder of several life science start-up companies and served as a venture principal at Third Rock Ventures. Dr. Shapiro’s has been awarded the Hertz, Soros, Miller and Life Science Research Foundation fellowships and the Hertz PhD Thesis Prize. In 2010, the Technology Review recognized him as one of the world’s top 35 innovators under age 35.


2009 - Genetically Engineered Sensors for Non-Invasive Molecular Imaging using MRI