Weissmann Wins Warren Alpert Foundation Prize
Charles Weissmann, head of the Department of Infectology at
the new Scripps Research campus in Palm Beach County, Florida,
has won the sixteenth annual Warren Alpert Foundation Scientific
Prize, awarded by the Warren Alpert Foundation to researchers
who have made an impact on hepatitis therapy.
Weissmann shares the prize with David V. Goeddel, founder
and CEO of Tularik, Inc., for crucial work in which they cloned
Hu-IFN-a in the bacterium E. coli and demonstrated
that biologically active interferon could be produced in large
enough quantities to make it a practical treatment for disease.
Interferon-alpha is the key component of the only known
treatment regimen for hepatitis C, a viral disease of the
liver spread by exposure to the blood of those already infected.
Approximately 170 million persons suffer from chronic hepatitis
C infection worldwide, and two to three million new cases
are diagnosed each year. If untreated, chronic hepatitis C
can lead to cirrhosis, and infection raises the risk of liver
cancer 100-fold. But using a combined regimen of pegylated
interferon-alpha and ribavirin, doctors now cure about 50
to 80 percent (depending on the viral strain) of chronically
infected hepatitis patients, heading off permanent liver damage
and cancer. Interferon-alpha is also used to treat hepatitis
B, human papillomavirus, various forms of leukemia, and Kaposi's
sarcoma, a cancer associated with HIV infection.
Stowers Chosen as 2004 Pew Biomedical Scholar
Assistant Professor Lisa Stowers has been chosen as one of
15 Pew Biomedical Scholars this year by The Pew Charitable
Trusts and the University of California at San Francisco.
The prestigious scholarship will fund her research over four
years and will provide a community of fellow scholars, who
will meet regularly to discuss ideas, challenges, and obstacles
Stowers' research focuses on the topic of how pheromoneschemical
signals that organisms use to communicate with one anotherinfluence
an animal's social behavior. Researchers have long known that
these chemicals are recognized by a specialized brain structure
called the vomeronasal organ (VNO). Models lacking a VNO,
however, can still detect and respond to pheromones. Using
a combination of genetic, biochemical, and behavioral analyses,
Stowers will explore the possibility that a particular population
of poorly characterized neurons lying outside the VNO plays
a role in controlling response to pheromones. She will also
analyze whether humans have a similar pheromone-sensing system
that might play into our own behaviors and social interactions.
On the Road to the Scripps Research Picnic, Street Scene
Mark your calendars! The Scripps Research picnicTSRI
Street Scene 2004will be Friday July 16, from 3:30 to
7:30 PM in the back parking lot of the CIMBio Building. Street
Scene participants will enjoy the sights, aromas, tastes,
and sounds of the festival, which will feature a Battle-of-the-Bands
contest. Be part of the audience at the end of the contest
to vote for your favorite band. Street Scene 2004 will also
feature face painting, carnival booths, palm readers, popcorn,
sno cones, hot pretzels, a 25-foot slide in the shape of a
giant whale, a wacky make-and-take hat booth, a Graffiti Board,
and competitions including The Ninja Attack and jousting.
Look for an invitation and map to the CIMBio Building, coming
to your interoffice mailbox soon.
Financial Awareness Week
Benefits Administration will be hosting its sixth annual Financial
Awareness Week Monday, July 12 through Friday July 16. Presentations,
which are aimed at both beginning and advanced investors,
will include those on: Social Security, systematic withdrawal
and life annuity, first time homebuyers /refinancing, investment
strategies, post-retirement health insurance options, GoldenState
Scholarshare Program, financial blunders, and stocks. Look
for more information via mail and e-mail over the next two
Financial Planning Seminar: "Understanding Investments"
Benefits Administration will be hosting "Understanding
Investments", the second in a yearlong series of financial
planning seminars, on Tuesday June 22nd from noon to 1 PM.
This session will offer an overview of the key components
of developing and managing an investment plan and portfolio,
such as the importance of diversification and methods for
protecting investments in a fluctuating market. The event
will be held in the Scripps Research Training Room, 2nd floor,
3377 North Torrey Pines Court.
TB Screenings, Hepatitis B Immunizations, Serum Draws,
and Tetanus Immunizations
On Monday, June 28, Wednesday, June 30, and Friday, July 2,
personnel from Sharp Rees-Stealy Medical Group will be onsite
to conduct TB screenings, Hepatitis B immunizations, serum
draws, and tetanus immunizations. The clinics will be conducted
at the Administrative Offices (3301 North Torrey Pines Court)
on the P1 level from 11 AM to 2 PM. No appointments are necessary.
TB screening requires a 48 to 72 hour follow-up. Individuals
receiving the TB screen on Monday will need to return on Wednesday,
and individuals screened on Wednesday, will need to return
on Friday. Initiation of the TB screening process will not
be available on Friday, but Hepatitis B immunization, serum
draws, and tetanus immunizations will be. To learn more about
these programs, see the Environmental Health & Safety Occupational
Medicine web page, which includes a map and patient information
Look for Next News&Views July 6
The next issue of News&Views will be published by Tuesday,
July 6 due to the July 4 holiday and our bi-weekly summer
schedule. The deadline for announcement and calendar submissions
is Wednesday at noon for the following week's publication.
Send comments to: mikaono[at]scripps.edu