Baumann wins BioArt contest


Heinz Baumann at the Roswell Cancer Research Institute in Buffalo, N.Y., is a 2015 winner of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology BioArt contest.

The contest highlights artistry in biomedical and life sciences by recognizing the often spectacular images and videos produced in the course of research. Laboratory-based images produced by federally funded investigators, contractors, trainees or members of FASEB societies are eligible for the competition.

Baumann is part of a research group that seeks to identify genetic changes that contribute to pancreatic cancer. The team labeled and tracked the tumor origins of cancer cells through the use of “confetti” fluorescent labeling in a mouse model. Cell descendants carried on a color induced in their parent cells, and the technique created a stunning, colorfully abstract proof of concept image.

Ohsumi to receive Rosentiel Award


Yoshinori Ohsumi, a cell biologist at the Frontier Research Center at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, will receive the 45th Lewis S. Rosenstiel Award for Distinguished Work in Basic Medical Research.

Brandeis University presents the award annually to scientists whose discoveries are of particular originality and importance to basic medical research. Brandeis is recognizing Ohsumi for his “pioneering discoveries of molecular pathways and biological functions of protein degradation by autophagy.”

Autophagy is a form of degradation and recycling and elimination of unnecessary cellular components. Ohsumi used budding yeast as a model organism to identify protein components of the autophagic machinery as well as mutations in many of the genes that code for these proteins. He and his colleagues also dis-covered some of the regulatory proteins of autophagy.

According to Brandeis, though “the lysosome was first identified in the 1950s, it was not until Dr. Ohsumi’s work that the many protein components of this degradative machine were identified.”

Written by Alexandra Pantos

Yamamoto appointed UCSF vice chancellor


Keith Yamamoto is the inaugural vice chancellor for science policy and strategy at the University of California, San Francisco. Yamamoto long has been a leading advocate for communication between policy makers and scientists. As part of his new role, he will contribute to policy at state and national levels, working in tandem with other leading officials in the scientific community to shape the development of scientific re-search and education.

Yamamoto also will help maintain UCSF’s ranking as the No. 1 public recipient of National Institutes of Health funding and its reputation as one of the primary institutions for science research and education in the country.

Yamamoto brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to his new position. He joined the UCSF faculty in 1976 and has served as professor of cellular and molecular pharmacology, vice dean of the School of Medicine, and the vice chancellor for research — all positions he will continue to occupy. Yamamoto also runs a lab that studies signaling and transcriptional regulation by nuclear receptors.

WUSTL’s Goldberg named distinguished professor


Daniel E. Goldberg has been named the first David M. and Paula L. Kipnis distinguished professor at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Goldberg is a professor of medicine and molecular micro-biology and has been co-chief of the school’s division of infectious diseases for 15 years.

This professorship honors the late David Kipnis, a pioneering scientist and educator who was with the university for almost 50 years, and his wife, Paula Kipnis. David Kipnis was instrumental in developing the university’s medical school, which he led for two decades. His late wife was considered an unofficial ambassador for the university.

Goldberg has contributed groundbreaking research on malaria and was director of the school’s medical scientist training program from 1997 to 2007. 

Goldberg has had a highly decorated career, and in 2013 the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology recognized him with the Alice and C. C. Wang Award in Molecular Parasitology.

Zuk tapped to direct NIGMS division


Dorit Zuk has been selected as the director of the National Institute of General Medical Sciences’ Division of Genetics and Developmental Biology. To help advance prevention, treatment and diagnosis of a variety of diseases, GDB funds research that studies the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying inheritance, gene expression and development.

A molecular biologist with a background in science policy and communication, Zuk is a former deputy editor of Cell and was the editor of Molecular Cell. Previously the science policy adviser to the National Institutes of Health deputy director for extramural research, she currently serves as director of the Office of Policy, Communications and Strategic Alliances at the NIH’s National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences.

Zuk also has held science policy fellowships with the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She has been with the NIH since 2007.

Written by Erik Chaulk