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Cambridge, Mass., February 1, 2022 – Flagship Pioneering is pleased to announce that CEO-Partner Christopher Austin, M.D., has been elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of the Science family of journals.

The 2021 class of AAAS Fellows includes 564 scientists, engineers, and innovators spanning 24 scientific disciplines who are being recognized for their scientifically and socially distinguished achievements.

“We are thrilled to announce Dr. Austin’s election as a AAAS Fellow and to celebrate this recognition of his remarkable contributions to advancing translational research and science,” said Flagship Pioneering Managing Partner Doug Cole, M.D. “I have had the privilege of knowing Chris since our time working together as neurology residents, and from the earliest days of his career, Chris has been deeply committed to ensuring the results of scientific innovation are brought to bear for the benefit of patients. We congratulate him on this distinct achievement.”

“It is an incredible honor to be elected as a AAAS Fellow,” said Flagship Pioneering CEO-Partner Christopher Austin, M.D. “I am humbled by this recognition and proud to be included in this extraordinary group of individuals who have demonstrated such a commitment to advancing science for the benefit of all.”

AAAS Fellows are a distinguished cadre of scientists, engineers, and innovators who have been recognized for their achievements across disciplines ranging from research, teaching, and technology, to administration in academia, industry, and government, to excellence in communicating and interpreting science to the public.

“AAAS is proud to bestow the honor of AAAS Fellow to some of today’s brightest minds who are integral to forging our path into the future,” said Dr. Sudip Parikh, AAAS chief executive officer and executive publisher of the Science family of journals. “We celebrate these distinguished individuals for their invaluable contributions to the scientific enterprise.”

An induction ceremony for the new Fellows will be held on February 19, 2022, at the AAAS Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The 2021 class of AAAS Fellows are also featured in the AAAS News & Notes section of Science in the January 2022 edition.

About Christopher Austin

Christopher Austin, M.D., joined Flagship Pioneering in 2021 as a CEO-Partner. Chris is a trained clinician and geneticist, with more than 20 years of experience in translational research in both the public and private sectors. He joined Flagship from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) where he served as the founding Director of the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS). In this role, he led the Center’s work to transform translation –the process by which interventions that benefit patients are developed and deployed – from an empirical process into a predictive science.

Chris previously served as Senior Advisor to the Director for translational research at the NIH National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) implementing research programs to derive scientific insights and therapeutic benefits from the results of the Human Genome Project. He also founded and directed the NIH Chemical Genomics Center, Therapeutics for Rare and Neglected Diseases program, Toxicology in the 21st Century initiative, and NIH Center for Translational Therapeutics. Before joining NIH, Chris worked at Merck, where he directed programs on genome-based discovery of novel targets and drugs, with a particular focus on treatments for schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s disease.

Chris is a member of the National Academy of Medicine and earned his M.D. from Harvard Medical School and his A.B. in Biology from Princeton University. He completed a research fellowship in developmental neurogenetics at Harvard and trained in internal medicine and neurology at the Massachusetts General Hospital.

About Flagship Pioneering

Flagship Pioneering conceives, creates, resources, and develops first-in-category bioplatform companies to transform human health and sustainability. Since its launch in 2000, the firm has, through its Flagship Labs unit, applied its unique hypothesis-driven innovation process to originate and foster more than 100 scientific ventures, resulting in more than $140 billion in aggregate value. To date, Flagship has deployed over $2.6 billion in capital toward the founding and growth of its pioneering companies alongside more than $19 billion of follow-on investments from other institutions. The current Flagship ecosystem comprises 42 transformative companies, including Axcella Health (Nasdaq: AXLA), Codiak BioSciences (Nasdaq: CDAK) Denali Therapeutics (Nasdaq: DNLI), Evelo Biosciences (Nasdaq: EVLO), Foghorn Therapeutics (Nasdaq: FHTX), Indigo Ag, Kaleido Biosciences (Nasdaq: KLDO), Moderna (Nasdaq: MRNA), Omega Therapeutics (Nasdaq: OMGA), Rubius Therapeutics (Nasdaq: RUBY), Sana Biotechnology (Nasdaq: SANA), Seres Therapeutics (Nasdaq: MCRB), and Sigilon Therapeutics (Nasdaq: SGTX).

About AAAS

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) is the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of the journal Science, as well as Science Translational Medicine; Science Signaling; a digital, open-access journal, Science Advances; Science Immunology; and Science Robotics. AAAS was founded in 1848 and includes more than 250 affiliated societies and academies of science, serving 10 million individuals. The nonprofit AAAS is open to all and fulfills its mission to “advance science and serve society” through initiatives in science policy, international programs, science education, public engagement, and more. For additional information about AAAS, visit

Flagship Pioneering:

AAAS: Tal Woliner, Chief Communications Officer, AAAS,, +1 202 326 6440