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In Memoriam: Loren "Larry" Parsons (1964 – 2016)



Of Note

Phil Baran Selected Blavatnik National Award Winner

Phil Baran, Darlene Shiley Chair in Chemistry at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI), is one of three winners of a 2016 Blavatnik National Award for Young Scientists, honoring early-career faculty-rank scientists and engineers “for their extraordinary achievements and outstanding promise.”

The awards, one each in the fields of physical science/engineering, chemistry and life sciences, are presented annually by the Blavatnik Family Foundation and administered by the New York Academy of Sciences.

Baran was recognized in the field of chemistry for his “transformative research in the field of natural product synthesis and the development of new synthetic methodology that enables chemists to design scalable, efficient, economically-viable synthetic routes to potential new drugs.”

The awards include an unrestricted cash award of $250,000—the largest unrestricted cash award given to early-career scientists. In addition to Baran, the other 2016 winners are David Charbonneau, professor of astronomy at Harvard University, and Michael Rape, professor of cell and developmental biology at the University of California, Berkeley.

The three laureates and 28 national finalists—including Professor Matthew Disney of Scripps Florida—will be honored at an awards ceremony on September 12 at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.

Additional information on Baran’s research is available on his faculty webpage and lab website.

Daniel Salomon Receives AST Investigator Award

TSRI Professor Daniel Salomon has received the American Society of Transplantation’s (AST) Basic Science Established Investigator Award, recognizing transformative achievements and contributions to the AST and the field of transplantation.

In particular, Salomon was cited for defining fundamental molecular mechanisms of T/B cell activation and regulation, producing detailed profiles of transcriptional and post-translational regulation relevant for transplantation and defining biomarkers for predicting rejection and managing immunosuppressive therapy.

Salomon also serves as program medical director for the Scripps Center for Organ and Cell Transplantation at Scripps Green Hospital. For additional information on Salomon and his research, visit his faculty webpage and lab website.

Robert Laprairie Ranks First in CIHR Fellowship Competition

Robert Laprairie, postdoctoral fellow in the Bohn lab on the Scripps Florida campus, ranked first among more than 1,000 applicants for a competitive fellowship from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).

Presented by the CIHR Institute of Neuroscience, Mental Health and Addiction, the fellowship is designed to support investigators designing and conducting innovative research aimed at improving health.

A Canadian native and PhD graduate of Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Laprairie’s research seeks to characterize type 1 cannabinoid receptor (CB1) ligand bias to develop safe and effective drugs for the treatment of pain, Huntington's and Parkinson's diseases, addiction and obesity.

ResearcHERS Lecture Shares Glimpses into Mysteries of Circadian Rhythms

Had a sleepless night? You might be able to blame your genes. That’s because genes produce the protein “time keepers” that control human circadian rhythms, the 24-hour biological clocks that influence a person’s sleep cycle, appetite and much more.

Biologist Katja Lamia shared her research into circadian rhythms and their mysterious connection to disease at a recent ResearcHERS event. For example, Lamia shared that studies have indicated that people who work night shifts have been shown to have a greater risk of getting cancer. She’s working to understand why disrupting the body’s clock might have this effect. “How can we harness that knowledge to improve human health?” Lamia asked.

Lamia’s lecture was followed by a Q&A session and an hors d'oeuvres reception, where attendees mingled with TSRI scientists and community supporters.

The event was the third in the ongoing ResearcHERS series, which highlights the work of TSRI’s female scientists in the fields of neuroscience, immunology, regenerative medicine, chemistry and more. ResearcHERS events are open to the public and feature an educational, lay-friendly speaking program informing attendees about research achievements and the collaborative spirit at TSRI.

The ResearcHERS series will continue on October 26 with a lecture by Professor Hollis Cline, chair of the Department of Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience and director of the Dorris Neuroscience Center at TSRI. For information and reservations, contact Chelsea Luedeke at or 858-784-7083.

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TSRI’s Phil Baran has won the 2016 Blavatnik National Award for Young Scientists in Chemistry. (Photo courtesy of the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.)

Daniel Salomon has been honored with the American Society of Transplantation’s Basic Science Established Investigator Award.

TSRI’s Katja Lamia shares her research into circadian rhythms at a recent public lecture. (Photo by Melissa Jacobs.)