Brian Kent Kobilka (born May 30, 1955) is an American physiologist and a recipient of the 2012  Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Robert Lefkowitz for discoveries that reveal the workings of G protein-coupled receptors. He is currently a professor in the department of Molecular and Cellular Physiology at Stanford University School of Medicine. He is also a co-founder of ConfometRx, a biotechnology company focusing on G protein-coupled receptors. He was named a member of the National Academy of Sciences in 2011.
Kobilka attended St. Mary's Grade School in
Little Falls, Minnesota, a part of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Saint Cloud. He then graduated from Little Falls High School. He received a  Bachelor’s Degree in Biology and Chemistry from the University of Minnesota Duluth, and earned his M.D., , from cum laude Yale University School of Medicine. Following the completion of his residency in internal medicine at Washington University School of Medicine's Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri, Kobilka worked in research as a postdoctoral fellow under Robert Lefkowitz at Duke University, where he started work on cloning the β. Kobilka moved to Stanford in 1989. 2-adrenergic receptor He was a  Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) investigator from 1987 to 2003.
Kobilka in Stockholm 2012
Kobilka is best known for his research on the structure and activity of
G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs); in particular, work from Kobilka's laboratory determined the molecular structure of the β. 2-adrenergic receptor    This work has been highly cited by other scientists because GPCRs are important targets for pharmaceutical therapeutics, but notoriously difficult to work with in  X-ray crystallography. Before,  rhodopsin was the only G-protein coupled receptor where the structure had been determined at high resolution. The β 2-adrenergic receptor structure was soon followed by the determination of the molecular structure of several other G-protein coupled receptors.
Kobilka is the 1994 recipient of the
American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics John J. Abel Award in Pharmacology. His GPCR structure work was named "runner-up" for the 2007 "Breakthrough of the Year" award from  . Science The work was, in part, supported by Kobilka's 2004 Javits Neuroscience Investigator Award  from the  National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. He received the 2012  Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Robert Lefkowitz for his work on G protein-coupled receptors. 
Kobilka is from
Little Falls in central Minnesota. Both his grandfather Felix J. Kobilka (1893–1991) and his father Franklyn A. Kobilka (1921–2004) were bakers and natives of Little Falls, Minnesota.   Kobilka's grandmother, Isabelle Susan Kobilka (née Medved, 1891–1980), belonged to the Medved and Kiewel families of  Prussian immigrants, who from 1888 owned the historical Kiewel brewery in Little Falls. His mother is Betty L. Kobilka (née Faust, b. 1930).
Kobilka met his wife Tong Sun Thian, a Malaysian-Chinese woman,
at the University of Minnesota Duluth. They have two children, Jason and Megan Kobilka   and are practicing Roman Catholics. 
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Bokoch, Michael P.; Zou, Yaozhong; Rasmussen, Søren G.F.; Kobilka, Brian K.; et al. (2010). "Ligand-specific regulation of the extracellular surface of a G-protein-coupled receptor". . Nature 463 (1): 108–112. doi: 10.1038/nature08650. OSTI 1002248. PMC . 2805469 PMID 20054398.
Rasmussen, Søren G.F.; DeVree, Brian T.; Zou, Yaozhong; Kobilka, Tong Sun; Kobilka, Brian K.; et al. (2011). "Crystal Structure of the β2 Adrenergic Receptor—Gs Protein Complex". . Nature 477 (9): 549–555. doi: 10.1038/nature10361. OSTI 1026537. PMC . 3184188 PMID 21772288.
Haga, Kazuko; Kruse, Andrew C.; Asada, Hidetsugu; Kobilka, Brian K.; et al. (2012). "Structure of the human M2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor bound to an antagonist". . Nature 482 (2): 547–551. doi: 10.1038/nature10753. OSTI 1035713. PMC . 3345277 PMID 22278061. Manglik, Aashish; Kruse, Andrew C.; Kobilka, Tong Sun; Kobilka, Brian K.; et al. (2012). "Crystal structure of the µ-opioid receptor bound to a morphinan antagonist". . Nature 485 (7398): 321–326. doi: 10.1038/nature10954. OSTI 1043732. PMC . 3523197 PMID 22437502.