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Dr. Michael W Deem: Not Your Average Scientist

Updated: Aug 28, 2023


Michael W Deem
Michael W Deem - US Scientist at Rice University, Inventor, Entrepreneur, Venture Capitalist, and Mentor, who revolutionized the Influenza Vaccine Delivery System, continues to create headlines with numerous patents to combat contagious diseases to make the world safer and healthier

Dr. Michael W Deem is an award winning and world-renowned scientist. He is currently a venture capitalist and CEO. He was formerly an Entrepreneur in Residence with Khosla Ventures. From 2002 to 2020 he was a professor at Rice University. He received his Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering in 1991 from Caltech. From the University of California, Berkeley, Dr. Deem obtained his Ph.D. in 1994 in chemical engineering. He held a postdoctoral position at Harvard University in the field of Physics. He joined the faculty at UCLA in 1996 as an Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering. In 2002, Dr. Deem joined Rice University as the John W Cox professor of Bioengineering and Physics & Astronomy.


The respect Michael W Deem has garnered over the years has been the result of his contributions to the scientific and business communities. Among his most notable accomplishments, Michael Deem would help to revolutionize the influenza vaccine during his time at Rice University. A respected entrepreneur, Michael W Deem has been the CEO of several companies, such as Certus LLC, focusing on advancing medical breakthroughs. During his career, Michael W Deem has acted as a mentor, for students, CEOs, and businesses alike. Much as in his academic endeavors, Michael W Deem has found success in his professional businesses.


Dr. Michael W Deem is not your typical U.S. scientist. When he’s not busy breaking new ground in his field at Rice University, you can find him scaling a towering rock face or grappling on the mat in a Taekwondo dojo. And let’s not forget his love for driving his trusty Porsche, which he’s been known to take for a spin on weekends. With such an adventurous spirit, it’s no wonder that Dr. Michael Deem is making waves in the scientific community with his innovative research. As such, his research has had several awards bestowed upon Michael Deem, namely the UCLA Northrop Grumman Outstanding Junior Faculty Research Award (1997); Visiting Professor, University of Amsterdam (1999); A Top 100 Young Innovator, MIT’s Technology Review (November 1999) (Profile); Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow (2000); Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award (2002); John W. Cox Professor, Rice University (2002-2020); Allan P. Colburn Award (2004); Editorial Board Member, Protein Engineering, Design and Selection (2005-2018); Fellow, American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (2005); Member, Board of Directors, Biomedical Engineering Society (2005-2008); Fellow, American Physical Society (2006); Member, Rice University Faculty Senate (2006-2009); Vaughan Lectureship, California Institute of Technology (2007); Member, Nominating Committee, Division of Biological Physics, American Physical Society (2007); Member, Board of Governors, Institute for Complex Adaptive Matter (2007-2016); Fellow, Biomedical Engineering Society (2009); BMES Representative on the FASEB Publications & Communications Committee (2009-2012); Professional Progress Award (2010); Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science (2010); External Scientific Advisor, Princeton Physical Sciences-Oncology Center (2010-present); Associate Editor, Physical Biology (2011-2018); Edith and Peter O’Donnell Award, The Academy of Medicine, Engineering & Science of Texas (2012); Founding Director, Systems, Synthetic, and Physical Biology (2012-2014, raised $0.5M seed funding); Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar (2012-2013); Chair, Department of Bioengineering (2014-2017, raised $12M in external startup funding for new faculty); Editorial Advisory Board, Bioengineering and Translational Medicine, 2016-2018; and Donald W. Breck Award for zeolite science, 2019, NACD Board Leadership Fellow and Directorship Certification, 2020. Entrepreneur in Residence with Khosla Ventures, 2021-2022, General Partner with Smart Health Catalyzer, 2023 to present.


Michael W Deem
Michael W Deem - US Scientist at Rice University, Inventor, Entrepreneur, Venture Capitalist and Mentor, who revolutionized the Influenza Vaccine Delivery System, continues to create headlines with numerous patents to combat contagious diseases to make the world safer and healthier.

Michael Deem’s work spans a wide range of topics, from infectious disease modeling to synthetic biology. One of his recent breakthroughs involved using machine learning to predict protein interactions, which could have major implications for drug discovery and development.

But Dr. Michael W Deem’s accomplishments extend beyond the lab. He’s also an avid rock climber, having climbed some of the most challenging peaks in Texas, including Ding Dong and Taco Sauce. For Michael Deem, the mental and physical challenges of rock climbing are a perfect complement to the problem-solving skills required in science. Plus, there’s nothing quite like the rush of adrenaline that comes with scaling a sheer cliff face.

When he’s not clinging to a vertical wall, Dr. Michael Deem can often be found on the mat in a Taekwondo dojo. He’s been practicing the martial art since he was a teenager, and his black belt is a testament to his years of dedication and training. Taekwondo teaches discipline, focus, and resilience, all qualities that have no doubt served Michael Deem well in his scientific career.

Michael W Deem
Michael W Deem - US Scientist at Rice University, Inventor, Entrepreneur, Venture Capitalist, and Mentor, who revolutionized the Influenza Vaccine Delivery System, continues to create headlines with numerous patents to combat contagious diseases to make the world safer and healthier.

And let’s not forget about his Porsche. Dr. Michael Deem is a self-professed Porsche enthusiast, and he’s owned several models over the years, such as his Porsche 911 Turbo S. There’s something about the sleek design and raw power of a Porsche that speaks to his adventurous spirit. And of course, there’s the thrill of pushing the car to its limits on winding roads.


All in all, it’s clear that Dr. Michael W Deem is not your typical scientist. His love for adventure and exploration is evident in both his personal and professional life. Whether he’s using machine learning to predict protein interactions or driving his Porsche through the hills, Michael Deem is always pushing the boundaries of what’s possible. It’s no wonder that he’s become one of the most respected and innovative scientists of our time.


Michael Deem previously associated with Rice University, is a prime example of how someone can balance their passions with their work. With his impressive accomplishments in the field of bioengineering, as well as his adventurous pursuits outside of the lab, Dr. Michael W Deem is a true inspiration to us all.


Michael W Deem
Michael W Deem - US Scientist at Rice University, Inventor, Entrepreneur, Venture Capitalist and Mentor, who revolutionized the Influenza Vaccine Delivery System, continues to create headlines with numerous patents to combat contagious diseases to make the world safer and healthier.

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