Vol 3. Issue 28 / September 27, 2004

In Brief

Del Zoppo Wins Javits Neuroscience Investigator Award
The Scripps Research Institute Associate Professor Gregory del Zoppo has won the Javits Neuroscience Investigator Award from the National Institutes of Health. The award was mandated by Congress to be given to selected individuals who have "demonstrated exceptional scientific excellence and productivity in one of the areas of neurological research supported by the NINDS [National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke], have proposals of the highest scientific merit, and be judged highly likely to be able to continue to do research on the cutting edge of their science for the next seven years."

Del Zoppo was selected for the award on the basis of his work on matrix biology of the brain in the setting of stroke. For more information on Del Zoppo's work, see the Fall 2004 issue of Endeavor.


Winzeler Wins Keck Distinguished Young Scholars Grant
Scripps Research Assistant Professor Elizabeth Winzeler has been awarded a 2004 Distinguished Young Scholars in Medical Research grant from the W. M Keck Foundation. The award is given annually to five junior biomedical investigators at leading research universities and institutions. According to the Keck Foundation, recipients are "the nation's most promising young scientists." Winzeler was selected on the basis of her record, her potential and her current research program on malaria. The awards of up to $1 million over five years will provide the resources needed to pursue "potentially breakthrough research projects in biomedicine."

Winzeler (B.A., Lewis & Clark College; M.S., Oregon State University; Ph.D., Stanford University) is using novel, genome-based methods for predicting gene function in the malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. The award provides funding to develop chemical genetic methods to test these predictions. Winzeler's goal is that the chemical compounds discovered in the course of these studies lead to new treatments for malaria.


Office of Graduate Studies Announces Fellowship Winners
The Scripps Research Office of Graduate Studies has announced the names of graduate students who have been selected for merit fellowships for the 2004-2005 academic year:

The Gilula Fellowship has been awarded to Luke Wiseman of the Kelly lab and Desiree Thayer of the Wong lab.

Achievement Rewards for College Scientists (ARCS) Foundation fellowships have been awarded to: Shannon Biros of the Rebek Lab, Johnathan Melnick of the Schultz lab, Kyle Chiang of the Cravatt lab, Leslie Nangle of the Schimmel lab, Bryan O'Neill of the Romesberg lab, and Dan Calarese of the Wilson lab. Incumbents are Jeff Chao of the Williamson lab, Sarah Hansen of the Wong lab, and Olgun Guvench of the Brooks lab.

The Andrea Elizabeth Vogt Memorial Award has been awarded to Warren Lewis of the Finn lab.


Traffic Update
The City's project to improve the sewer system through La Jolla remains ongoing. A contractor is scheduled to restripe the road along North Torrey Pines Road, at Expedition Way and at Salk Institute Road, through Friday, October 1.


Lunch and Learn: "Identity Theft"
Lisa Sharf, victim recovery officer with the Identity Theft Resource Center will speak on "Identity Theft: The Nightmare that Keeps on Giving" on Wednesday, September 29, from noon to 1 PM as part of the ongoing Lunch and Learn seminar series. Topics will include:

  • Who are these criminals? How do they steal? Why are they dangerous?
  • How you can protect yourself,
  • What to do if you are a victim of identity theft,
  • What legislative and assistance programs are in place to help victims,
  • How businesses and companies can protect you or put you at risk.

The event will take place in the W.M. Keck Amphitheater, The Beckman Center for Chemical Sciences. For more information, contact Jan Hill, Counseling and Postdoctoral Services, x4-2950. No reservations are necessary.


Financial Planning Seminar: "Debunking the Myths of Estate Planning"
Benefits Administration will be hosting a seminar by estate planning attorney and CPA Amy Rypins entitled "Debunking the Myths of Estate Planning: What Trusts Will and Won't Do," on Wednesday September 29, from noon to 1 PM. This session, the third in a yearlong series of financial planning seminars, will address common myths and questions surrounding the use of family trusts. The event will be held in the Scripps Research Training Room, second floor, 3377 North Torrey Pines Court.


Open Enrollment: Dependent Eligibility and Documentation
Open Enrollment will be held via an online system from October 25 through November 12. This is the annual opportunity to make changes to your benefit selections and, if eligible, re-enroll (or enroll) in the health care or dependent care spending accounts for the 2005 plan year. Benefits Administration will be sending out a series of announcements over the next several weeks with important information you need to know regarding your benefits in 2005.

This week's topic:dependent eligibility and documentation.Effective with changes to add dependents during Open Enrollment and with the new plan year starting on January 1, 2005, you will be required to show proof of dependency for all eligible dependents you enroll in the benefit plans. Eligible dependents include spouse, same gender domestic partners, opposite gender domestic partners age 62 or over, and dependent children up to age 18 or up to age 25 if a full-time student. More information regarding the common types of proof of dependency you may provide can be found on the Required Benefit Enrollment Documentation information sheet. 

You may add or drop dependents from your coverage for any reason during Open Enrollment. However, effective January 1, 2005, you will be required to provide documentation as to the reason why dependents are being added/dropped from your coverage. Some common examples of such documentation include: divorce or legal separation documents, proof of other coverage for the dependent (a copy of the enrollment form or benefit card), or loss of other coverage for the dependent (COBRA notice from their former employer). You are required to complete a Benefit Coverage Change form and provide proof within 31 days of the qualified status change.

If you currently cover dependents on the Scripps Research health plan you are not required to provide proof of dependency, but will be required to do so if any changes happen in the future. If you have any questions regarding the new requirements, please contact Benefits Administration at x4-8487.


Send comments to: mikaono[at]scripps.edu