Vol 9. Issue 39 / December 21, 2009


Bruce Beutler Awarded Will Rogers Prize
Bruce Beutler, the chairman of the Department of Genetics at The Scripps Research Institute, has received the Will Rogers Annual Prize for Research, which the Will Rogers Institute awards for outstanding contributions to lung research. Beutler was cited for "his discoveries about the molecular basis of innate immunity and inflammation."

Beutler is the third recipient of the prize, which includes an award of $50,000. The previous two winners were Nobel laureate Peter Agre (2008) and current National Institutes of Health Director Francis Collins (2007).

Kim Janda Selected to Receive Honorary Degree from the University of Helsinki
Professor Kim Janda, Ely R. Callaway, Jr. Professor of Chemistry, director of the Worm Institute of Research and Medicine, and member of the Skaggs Institute for Chemical Biology, has been selected to receive an honorary degree from the Faculty of Pharmacy of the University of Helsinki, Finland, "the highest honor the university can grant." He will receive the degree at a ceremony to be held on May 28, 2010.

Curt Wittenberg Elected Fellow of AAAS
Professor Curt Wittenberg has been awarded the distinction of American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Fellow. Election as a fellow is an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers for scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. Wittenberg was cited for "distinguished contributions to our understanding of the regulation of cell proliferation."

New fellows will be presented with an official certificate and a gold and blue (representing science and engineering, respectively) rosette pin on February 20, 2010 at the AAAS Annual Meeting in San Diego.

Erica Ollmann Saphire Wins $1.2 Million NIH Award
Associate Professor Erica Ollmann Saphire has won a grant from the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The $1.2-million two-year award, funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, will support structural analysis of the surface glycoprotein of marburgvirus and eventual design of medical defenses against it. Marburgvirus is one the most lethal pathogens known to infect humans. Recent outbreaks have caused hemorrhagic fever with up to 90 percent lethality.

Pat Griffin Wins $1.2 Million NIH Award
Patrick Griffin, chair of the Scripps Research Department of Molecular Therapeutics and director of the Translational Research Institute at Scripps Florida, has won a three-year grant of more than $1.2 million from the National Cancer Institute of the NIH to develop a series of high-throughput screening tests that will help speed the discovery of potential small molecule therapies for breast cancer and cardiovascular disease. The tests will focus on identifying ligands for the orphan nuclear receptor liver receptor homolog-1 or LRH-1, which plays a crucial role in hormone-driven breast cancer through its regulation of genes involved in hormone biosynthesis as well as fat and cholesterol metabolism—key risk factors in cardiovascular disease.

Ian Wilson to Speak at the Fleet Science Center
Professor Ian Wilson, member of the Skaggs Institute for Chemical Biology at Scripps Research, will speak on "Viruses" as part of the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center's Senior Mondays Afternoon Scholars lectures on Monday, January 4 from 12:30 to 2 PM. The lecture will take place in the William & Grayson Boehm Community Forum at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center, 1875 El Prado, San Diego, CA 92101. Guests are encouraged to purchase lecture tickets by 11 AM and are welcome to enjoy the galleries before the lecture. Seniors 65 and older receive admission for $6 on Mondays. See the Fleet website or call (619) 238-1233 x808 for more details.


Send comments to: mikaono[at]scripps.edu