Tadataka “Tachi” Yamada MD, KBE served as the Advisory Board Chair of our Institute since its founding almost ten years ago. His tremendous mentorship helped us in innumerable ways to grow from a single-PI Institute founded by David Baker to a group of five faculty and almost 200 scientists and staff.
Tachi also helped shepherd the IPD’s Translational Investigator Program, serving as the Chair of the Board of two of our spinouts, PvP and Icosavax. PvP was acquired in 2020 by Takeda, which continues to develop the Rosetta-designed enzyme Kumamax, invented by Dr. Ingrid Swanson Pultz in the Baker Lab, as an oral therapeutic for celiac disease. Icosavax, which completed their IPO last week, is developing nanoparticle vaccines invented in the King lab at the IPD and recently advanced a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine into human clinical trials.
From all of us at the Institute for Protein Design, we send our deepest condolences to Tachi’s family and especially to his wife, Leslie Yamada.
Tachi will be deeply missed. We thank him for his mentorship, leadership, service, and his gift of time in helping to create the IPD.