Scientists Advance Physics of Single ‘Transformer’ Proteins with Role in Cancer
TSRI Team Comes Together with Rare Disease Community
Snapshot: Danielle Grotjahn



In Brief

Three Scientific Advances at TSRI Cited Among Top Stories of 2015

Research advances at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) are highlighted on several lists of top stories of 2015.

The development of a powerful and broadly effective anti-HIV drug candidate by Professor Michael Farzan and colleagues is included among the 20 most notable advances of 2015 by the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (see article and slideshow (slide 5)). In addition to being listed among the tops stories of the year by Discover Magazine, the story is also ranked among “The Top 10 Most Prominent Science News Stories for 2015” by Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News and other publications. For more information on the research, see News&Views and Nature.

Professors Dennis Burton, David Nemazee and William Schief’s work demonstrating that the immune system can be primed to block HIV infection is included among the San Diego Union-Tribune’s “Top Ten Local Stories in 2015.” Their research was also featured in The Scientist and the online news outlet BuzzFeed. For more information on the work, see News&Views, Science and Cell.

Finally, a study by Associate Professor Courtney Miller and colleagues showing the potential to selectively erase addiction-associated memories in people with methamphetamine dependency is highlighted in a Huffington Post article, “8 Fascinating Things We Learned About the Mind in 2015.” Other publications that have featured the work include Fierce Biotech and Gizmag. For more information on the research, see News&Views and Nature.

January 14 Dixon Lecture to Feature Renowned Immunologist Rafi Ahmed

The 2016 Frank J. Dixon Memorial Lecture, scheduled for Thursday, January 14, 4:30 PM, will feature Rafi Ahmed, world-renowned immunologist and former TSRI postdoctoral fellow, speaking on “T Cell Memory and Exhaustion.” The event is open to the San Diego science community.

A fellow of the National Academy of Science, Ahmed is director of the Emory Vaccine Center, professor of microbiology and immunology at Emory University School of Medicine, associate director of vaccine science for the Emory Center for AIDS Research and a Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar. His groundbreaking discoveries on immune memory, including the 1994 Nature paper “Cytotoxic T-cell memory without antigen,” have laid the foundation for understanding vaccine-induced immune response.

The annual lecture honors Frank Dixon, a pioneering immunologist who was the founding director of the research division of Scripps Clinic and Research Foundation (predecessor organization to TSRI). He passed away in 2008 at the age of 87. The lecture is supported by the Frank J. Dixon Memorial Lectureship Fund, established with support from family, friends and former colleagues.

The lecture will be held at The Auditorium at TSRI; a reception will follow in the Faculty Club. For directions and inquiries, contact

William Roush to Speak at January 13 CA Faculty Lecture

William Roush, professor in the Department of Chemistry, executive director of medicinal chemistry and associate dean of graduate studies at Scripps Florida, will speak on “Development of Proof-of-Concept Chemical Probes Targeting Novel Biological Targets” at the next Scripps California Faculty Lecture series presentation on Wednesday, January 13.

The lecture will begin at 5 PM in the in the Timkin Amphitheater in the Green Hospital in La Jolla. A reception will follow in the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Building, first floor. For further information, see Roush’s Faculty Lecture Series webpage. The series is supported by an endowment from the Cochrane-Cartan families, established by TSRI Professor Emeritus Charles G. Cochrane.

CA Career Workshops: LinkedIn Profiles, Financial Education

California postdoctoral fellows and graduate students are invited to take advantage of career development opportunities sponsored by TSRI Career and Postdoctoral Services in January.

LinkedIn Help
Drop-in appointments for help in building a strong, comprehensive LinkedIn profile are available on Tuesday, January 12, from 11 AM to 1 PM. Jean Branan, Career and Postdoctoral Services program coordinator, will conduct individual 10- to 15-minute profile reviews in the Career Resource room in the Graduate Office, first floor, Hazen Theory building. Registration is required.

Smart Financial Planning
The workshop, “Smart Money Moves in Your 20s and 30s–10 Ways to Set Yourself Up for Financial Success,” is scheduled for Thursday, January 21, from 4 to 5:30 PM. Reviewing budgets, emergency funds and retirement savings, the session will be conducted by James Lingelbach and Ciano Ordinola, MetLife financial advisors and PlanSmart financial education facilitators.

The workshop will be held in the Graduate Office dining room, first floor of the Hazen Theory building. Seating is limited; reservations are required.

Ten Tips: Gratitude for the New Year

Shifting your focus from New Year resolutions to gratitude could actually help fulfill those good intentions, advises Daphne Lurie, director of TSRI Counseling and Psychological Services, in the latest of her “Ten Tips” series; research links gratitude to optimism, enhanced relationships, greater work productivity and fewer visits to the doctor’s office.

Lurie’s suggestions for developing a sustained attitude of gratitude include:

  • Establishing a ritual of pausing for a few minutes each day to recall something or someone for which you are grateful
  • Recording a few sentences of thanks each day in a journal
  • Writing to or visiting with a person whom you appreciate

A complete list of “Ten Tips for the New Year” is available on the counseling office website. For information on other resources offered by Counseling and Psychological Services to the Scripps community on both the California and Florida campuses, visit the department’s website

New Discussion Group Examines Perfectionism

An orientation meeting for a new monthly support group, “Overcoming Perfectionism,” will be held on Thursday, January 14, at noon in the Beckman building’s fifth-floor north conference room.

Offered by TSRI Counseling and Psychological Services to the Scripps California community, the group is designed to help participants disengage from perfectionist tendencies and increase self-acceptance.

Daphne Lurie and Tamara Ho of TSRI’s counseling department will facilitate the group, drawing upon the Gifts of Imperfection, authored by noted researcher and TED talk presenter Brene Brown, who provides 10 guideposts on the power of engaging with the world from a place of worthiness.

RSVP to Holly Wheeler, or x4-7297.

At the Auditorium: Dvorak Chamber Music

Mainly Mozart’s Spotlight Series begins its 2016 chamber music presentations with a program of Antonín Dvorak compositions on Saturday, January 9. Violinists Geoff Nuttall and Amy Schwartz Moretti, violist Roberto Diaz, cellist Christopher Costanza and pianist Anne-Marie McDermott will perform Dvorak’s “Terzetto in C Major for Two Violins and Viola” and his “Piano Quintet in A Major.” A 6:30 PM wine reception will precede the 7:30 PM concert. Ticket information is available on the Mainly Mozart website.

The Auditorium at TSRI is located at 10640 John Jay Hopkins Drive, San Diego 92121.

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