Biography: Lakshmi Krishnan

Lakshmi Krishnan

Vice-President of Life Sciences

Dr. Lakshmi Krishnan was appointed as Vice President of Life Sciences on a continuing basis as of April 1, 2022. In this capacity, she oversees the Human Health Therapeutics, Aquatic and Crop Resource Development and Medical Devices research centres.

As a globally recognized Life Sciences researcher, Dr. Krishnan has been a leader for driving innovation in the area of vaccine technologies and novel biologics for the improvement of human health. Over the course of her career, she has represented the NRC and the Government of Canada at various national and international joint committees and has been invited as a guest speaker on many occasions. In her current role, she is committed to health innovation and sustainable bio-economy.

Dr. Krishnan joined the NRC in 1997 and, as a scientist, built expertise in immunology research at the Institute for Biological Sciences (IBS), in the areas of vaccine adjuvants and host pathogen interactions. Prior to her current appointment, she was the Director General (DG) of the Human Health Therapeutics (HHT) Research Centre (2018-2022), Program Lead for Vaccines and Immunotherapy (2015-2018), Director of R&D for Immunobiology at HHT (2016-2018), and a research officer (1997-2014) at IBS and HHT. Over the course of her career, Dr. Krishnan has been the recipient of numerous competitive research grants from various agencies including the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR), the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH – USA). She has published over 75 primary research articles in peer-reviewed journals in the field of vaccine technologies, host-pathogen and cancer immunity, and is listed as an inventor on several patents. She has significant experience in technology transfer to industrial clients and at the same time has a strong academic background, having mentored several graduate students who have all gone on to have successful research careers. She is member of the board of the Canadian Cancer Research Alliance, National Synthetic Biology Steering Committee and also chaired the Federal Vaccine Research Innovation and Development DG committee, which consists of membership from 13 different federal departments across the Government of Canada.

Dr. Krishnan received her Master's Degree in Bio-medical Genetics from the University of Madras (India) and Ph.D. in Immunology from the National Institute of Immunology in India, following which, she completed post-doctoral studies at the University of Alberta through an Alberta Heritage Foundation scholarship. In her spare time, Dr. Krishnan enjoys travel and outdoor activities with her family and she also volunteers with several not-for-profit organizations for mentoring leadership skills among youth.