Keith R. Yamamoto, PhD

Keith R. Yamamoto, PhD

Vice Chancellor for Research; Executive Vice Dean, School of Medicine; Professor, Departments of Cellular/Molecular Pharmacology and Biochemistry/Biophysics, UCSF

Phone: (415) 476-3128 (voice)
Box 2280, UCSF
San Francisco, CA 94143-2280

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Cancer Center Membership

Program Member » Prostate Cancer

Research Summary

Dr. Yamamoto oversees strategic planning as well as research activities at UCSF's school of medicine. After earning a PhD at Princeton, he came to UCSF in 1973. He served as chair of the Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology from 1994 to 2003. Dr. Yamamoto is regarded as an international leader in studying the mechanisms of signaling and gene regulation by intracellular receptors.


Iowa State University, Ames, IA, B.Sc., 1968, Biochemistry and Biophysics
Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, Ph.D., 1973, Biochemical Sciences
University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, postdoc, 1973-1975, Molecular Biology

Professional Experience

  • 1976-1979
    Assistant Professor of Biochemistry, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, UCSF
  • 1979-1983
    Associate Professor of Biochemistry, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, UCSF
  • 1983-2003
    Professor of Biochemistry, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, UCSF
  • 1985-1994
    Vice Chairman, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, UCSF
  • 1988-2001
    Director, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Program, Program in Biological Sciences, UCSF
  • 1994-2003
    Chairman, Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology, UCSF
  • 1994-present
    Professor, Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology
  • 2002-2003
    Vice Dean for Research, School of Medicine
  • 2004
    Executive Vice Dean, School of Medicine
  • 2011
    Vice Chancellor for Research, UCSF

Honors & Awards

  • 1977-1982
    NIH Research Career Development Award
  • 1979-1980
    UCSF Distinguished Teaching Award
  • 1982-1986
    Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award
  • 1988
    American Academy of Arts and Sciences
  • 1989
    National Academy of Sciences
  • 1990
    Gregory Pincus Medal
  • 1992
    American Academy of Microbiology
  • 1997
    Faculty Research Lecturer, UC San Francisco
  • 1997
    Iowa State University Distinguished Achievement Citation
  • 1998
    Theodore Roosevelt High School Hall of Fame, Des Moines, Iowa
  • 1999
    Vanderbilt Medal of Merit, Vanderbilt University
  • 2001
    Iowa State University D.Sc., honorary
  • 2002
    Elected Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science
  • 2003
    Institute of Medicine
  • 2004
    Allan Munck Prize, Dartmouth University
  • 2008
    10 Influential People to Watch in Biomedical Policy, Nature Medicine
  • 2010
    UCSF Postdoctoral Scholars Association Outstanding Faculty Mentorship Award
  • 2012
    The Endocrine Society 2012 Edwin B. Astwood Award
  • 2012
    American Society for Cell Biology 2012 Public Service Award
  • 2013
    John V. Atanasoff Discovery Award

Selected Publications

  1. Precision medicine: Beyond the inflection point. Sci Transl Med. 2015 Aug 12; 7(300):300ps17.
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  2. Biotechnology. A prudent path forward for genomic engineering and germline gene modification. Science. 2015 Apr 3; 348(6230):36-8.
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  3. Regulatory Actions of Glucocorticoid Hormones: From Organisms to Mechanisms. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2015; 872:3-31.
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  4. Germline Signals Deploy NHR-49 to Modulate Fatty-Acid ß-Oxidation and Desaturation in Somatic Tissues of C. elegans. PLoS Genet. 2014 Dec; 10(12):e1004829.
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  5. Glucocorticoid receptor binds half sites as a monomer and regulates specific target genes. Genome Biol. 2014; 15(7):418.
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  6. SUMO as a nuclear hormone receptor effector: New insights into combinatorial transcriptional regulation. Worm. 2014; 3:e29317.
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  7. Defects in the C. elegans acyl-CoA synthase, acs-3, and nuclear hormone receptor, nhr-25, cause sensitivity to distinct, but overlapping stresses. PLoS One. 2014; 9(3):e92552.
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  8. Hic-5 is a transcription coregulator that acts before and/or after glucocorticoid receptor genome occupancy in a gene-selective manner. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2014 Mar 18; 111(11):4007-12.
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  9. Sumoylated NHR-25/NR5A regulates cell fate during C. elegans vulval development. PLoS Genet. 2013; 9(12):e1003992.
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  10. A naturally occurring insertion of a single amino acid rewires transcriptional regulation by glucocorticoid receptor isoforms. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013 Oct 29; 110(44):17826-31.
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  11. The glucocorticoid receptor dimer interface allosterically transmits sequence-specific DNA signals. Nat Struct Mol Biol. 2013 Jul; 20(7):876-83.
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  12. Commentary: Team science. Acad Med. 2013 Feb; 88(2):156-7.
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  13. Incoherent feed-forward regulatory logic underpinning glucocorticoid receptor action. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013 Jan 29; 110(5):1964-9.
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  14. New and improved proteomics technologies for understanding complex biological systems: addressing a grand challenge in the life sciences. Proteomics. 2012 Sep; 12(18):2773-83.
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  15. Leveraging crowdsourcing to facilitate the discovery of new medicines. Sci Transl Med. 2011 Jun 22; 3(88):88mr1.
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  16. The glucocorticoid receptor and the coregulator Brm selectively modulate each other's occupancy and activity in a gene-specific manner. Mol Cell Biol. 2011 Aug; 31(16):3267-76.
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  17. Occupancy of chromatin organizers in the Epstein-Barr virus genome. Virology. 2011 Jun 20; 415(1):1-5.
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  18. A coactivator role of CARM1 in the dysregulation of ß-catenin activity in colorectal cancer cell growth and gene expression. Mol Cancer Res. 2011 May; 9(5):660-70.
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  19. Cross talk between glucocorticoid and estrogen receptors occurs at a subset of proinflammatory genes. J Immunol. 2011 Apr 1; 186(7):4354-60.
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  20. Circadian rhythm gene period 3 is an inhibitor of the adipocyte cell fate. J Biol Chem. 2011 Mar 18; 286(11):9063-70.
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