QCB Faculty in the News
David Botstein shares Warren Alpert Foundation Prize
06/19/13 - David Botstein, Princeton University's Anthony B. Evnin '62 Professor of Genomics and the current director of the Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics, is a recipient of the 2013 Warren Alpert Foundation Prize in recognition for his work that helped establish a framework for the Human Genome Project. Botstein shares the prize with Stanford Univesity School of Medicine faculty members Ronald Davis and David Hogness. In 1980, Botstein and Davis published a conceptual breakthrough that gave researchers the tools to trace and map out the genetic inheritance of disease in humans. Hogness' work provided the means of identifying the precise physical location of genes of interest on chromosomes. The recipients will be honored at a symposium on Thursday, Oct. 3, at Harvard Medical School.
David Tank is member of Steering Committee for Federal BRAIN Initiative
4/18/13 - Princeton University neuroscientists are poised to play a leading role in revolutionizing our understanding of the human brain as outlined in President Barack Obama's BRAIN Initiative.
David Tank, Lewis-Sigler Institute member, Henry L. Hillman Professor in Molecular Biology, and co-director of the Princeton Neuroscience Institute (PNI), is a member of the steering committee for the federal BRAIN Initiative. (Read more.)
David Botstein receives Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences
2/20/13 - David Botstein, Anthony B. Evnin '62 Professor of Genomics and molecular biology and director of the Lewis-Sigler Institute, is one of eleven recipients of the newly created Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences. The prizes, created by four Internet entrepreneurs, are intended to reward scientists who take big risks and whose work will have a major impact on lives. (Read more in The New York Times.)
Manuel Llinás receives Gates Foundation Grant
11/01/12 - Manuel Llinás, an associate professor of molecular biology and the Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics, received a Grand Challenges Explorations Round 9 grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to seek more effective malaria drugs. Llinás was among more than 80 recipients of the award, which includes an initial grant of $100,000 with a potential follow-on grant of up to $1 million.
Llinás will work to develop a rapid-screening tool that would characterize the biochemical signature of new classes of anti-malarial drugs formulated in recent years. Using mass spectrometry-based metabolomics, Llinás and his research group will identifythe metabolic pathways of the malaria parasite that these drug compounds alter, as well as explore the potential targets of these compounds and define possible mechanisms of drug-resistance. These results could lead to drug combinations that target multiple metabolic pathways and forestall the development of drug-resistant malaria parasites.
Grand Challenges Explorations funds individuals worldwide who are taking innovative approaches to some of the world’s toughest and persistent global health and development challenges."
John Hopfield receives Swartz Prize
10/13/12 — The Society for Neuroscience (SfN) has awarded the Swartz Prize for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience to Lewis-Sigler Institute member John J. Hopfield, who is Princeton University's Howard A. Prior Professor in the Life Sciences and professor of molecular biology Emeritus.
Supported by The Swartz Foundation, this prize, which includes $25,000, recognizes an individual who has produced a significant cumulative contribution to theoretical models or computational methods in neuroscience. The award was presented to Hopfield on October 13 during the society's 2012 conference in New Orleans. (Read more)
Coleen Murphy heads Paul F. Glenn Laboratories for Aging Research at Princeton
10/05/12 - Under a new $3 million grant from the Glenn Foundation for Medical Research, Princeton University researchers will study the biology of aging and healthspan.
The grant will establish the Paul F. Glenn Laboratories for Aging Research at Princeton under the leadership of Coleen Murphy, associate professor of Molecular Biology and the Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics. The funding will support pioneering collaborative work by faculty members in neuroscience, computer science, computational biology, physics and mathematics on the biological mechanisms that control the aging process. (Read more)
Arsenic-loving bug theory disproved
7/8/12 - In a paper published in Science that is getting wide play in national media, a group of researchers that includes Marshall Reaves, Joshua Rabinowitz, and Leonid Kruglyak from Princeton University, disproves the sensational claim (reported last year in Science) that, under phosphate limiting conditions, arsenate could replace phosphorous in the DNA of a microbe.
The Science abstract reads: A strain of Halomonas bacteria, GFAJ-1, has been claimed to be able to use arsenate as a nutrient when phosphate is limiting, and to specifically incorporate arsenic into its DNA in place of phosphorus. However, we have found that arsenate does not contribute to growth of GFAJ-1 when phosphate is limiting and that DNA purified from cells grown with limiting phosphate and abundant arsenate does not exhibit the spontaneous hydrolysis expected of arsenate ester bonds. Furthermore, mass spectrometry showed that this DNA contains only trace amounts of free arsenate and no detectable covalently bound arsenate.
Full Citation: Absence of Detectable Arsenate in DNA from Arsenate-Grown GFAJ-1 Cells, M. L. Reaves, S. Sinha, J. D. Rabinowitz, L. Kruglyak, R. J. Redfield. Science 1219861. Published online 8 July 2012. [DOI:10.1126/science. 1219861]
William Bialek named to National Academy of Sciences
4/27/12 - William Bialek, Lewis-Sigler Institute member and John Archibald Wheeler/Battelle Professor in Physics, has been elected to membership in The National Academy of Sciences, along with 83 others in the U.S., including several from Princeton. Members are elected in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research. Election to the Academy is considered one of the highest professional honors among scientists, engineers, and health care professionals. (Full list)