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Published May 01 2018

Rochester’s Maquat wins Wiley Prize

University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry professor Lynne E. Maquat has won the Wiley Prize in Biomedical Sciences.

Awarded since 2002, the Wiley Prize recognizes novel and innovative research in the biomedical sciences. Maquat is being honored for elucidating the mechanism of nonsense-mediated messenger RNA decay, a fundamental process through which cells remove defective transcripts that can encode toxic proteins.

Maquat holds the J. Lowell Orbison endowed chair and serves as professor in the department of biochemistry and biophysics. She is the founding director of the university’s Center for RNA Biology, where she has established herself as a leading figure in RNA research.

The award carries a $50,000 prize, which was presented to Maquat in April at Rockefeller University in New York City.

Lynne Maquat

Trinity names Bowie an associate dean

Andrew Bowie, a professor at Trinity College Dublin’s School of Biochemistry and Immunology, has been named an associate dean of research. In his new role, Bowie will develop Trinity’s research strategy with the university’s dean of research.

Bowie, who studies innate immunology, has served as director of research in the school of biochemistry and immunology (2005 to 2009) and head of immunology (2011 to 2017).

He is a member of the Royal Irish Academy.

Andrew Bowie

McCarty wins Fulbright scholarship

Nicholas McCarty won a Fulbright scholarship to study at Imperial College London.

McCarty completed his undergraduate studies in bioengineering at the University of Iowa. In Dale Abel’s lab, McCarty studied diabetes, insulin signaling and heart failure.

At Imperial, he’ll focus on developing CRISPR, the groundbreaking genetic engineering tool, while he pursues a one-year master’s degree in systems and synthetic biology.

Nicholas McCarty

Caruthers, Pennington recognized for inventions


Marvin Caruthers

Mary Engle Pennington

Marvin Caruthers and the late Mary Engle Pennington were named this year to the National Inventors Hall of Fame. Founded in 1973, the hall of fame honors individuals, both living and deceased, who conceived and patented groundbreaking technological innovations.

Caruthers is being honored for developing methods for the chemical synthesis of DNA. His work significantly advanced biological research and the biotechnology industry. A distinguished professor of chemistry and biochemistry, Caruthers has served on the faculty at the University of Colorado-Boulder since 1973. He also co-founded several biotech companies, including Amgen, Applied Biosystems, Array BioPharma and miRagen Therapeutics.

Pennington, who lived from 1872 to 1952, was a bacteriological chemist, food scientist and refrigeration engineer who worked in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Chemistry, which later became the Food and Drug Administration. Pennington is being honored posthumously for her innovations in food preservation and storage, which greatly improved the lives of many Americans. Among her inventions were a poultry-cooling rack, a bacteria-resistant method of treating eggs, and a sterile food products container.

Helen Hobbs wins Harrington Prize

Helen Hobbs, professor at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, won the Harrington Prize for Innovation in Medicine. Established in 2014, the Harrington Prize recognizes scientists who have conducted groundbreaking and creative research with potential for clinical impact.

Hobbs was honored for her discovery, together with her lab partner Jonathan Cohen, of the link between PCSK9, a gene mutation, and lower levels of low-density lipoprotein, commonly known as bad cholesterol. Her research has led to improved treatment of high cholesterol.

The prize carries a $20,000 honorarium, a lectureship at the American Society for Clinical Investigation’s annual meeting and publication of a personal essay in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.

Hobbs has served on the faculty at UT Southwestern since 1987. There, she founded the Dallas Heart Study, a multiethnic, population-based study seeking to improve diagnosis, prevention and treatment of heart disease.

Helen Hobbs

In memoriam: Roswell Boutwell

Roswell Boutwell, professor emeritus of oncology at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, passed away at the age of 99 in August in Middleton, Wisconsin.

Boutwell was born in Madison, Wisconsin, in 1917. He completed undergraduate studies at Beloit College before earning both his M.S. and Ph.D. in biochemistry at the University of Wisconsin–Madison.

Boutwell was a founding member of the department of oncology at the McArdle Laboratory for Cancer Research at Madison, where he contributed significant research toward understanding cancerous tumor growth. Among his many research accomplishments, he demonstrated the correlations between caloric intake and cancer.

In addition to serving on the faculty at Madison, Boutwell was appointed to the National Cancer Advisory Board from 1984 to 1990 and acted as a consultant to both the Food and Drug Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency.

His wife of 72 years, Luella Mae “Lou” Fairchild, passed away in 2015. He is survived by his three sons, Paul, Philip and David.

Roswell Boutwell

In memoriam: Kevin Catt

Kevin Catt passed away after a long illness in Bethesda, Maryland, in October. He was 85.

Born in Richmond, Victoria, Australia, Catt attended the University of Melbourne, where he earned his medical degree in 1960. He later earned his Ph.D. in biochemistry at Monash University in 1967.

Catt moved to the United States in 1969 and a year later began work at the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. He went on to serve as chief of the section on hormonal regulation and chief of the endocrinology and reproduction research branch at the NICHD. He invented the solid-phase radio-immunoassay in addition to developing other novel methods for research studies and clinical investigations.

A prolific author, Catt published more than 700 scientific papers and book chapters throughout his career. He retired from the NIH in 2012.

He is survived by his wife, Maria Dufau, and sons, Nicholas and Matthew.

Kevin Catt

In memoriam: Charles Dreiling

Charles Ernest Dreiling passed away at his home in Foresthill, California, in January of brain cancer. He was 76.

Dreiling was raised in Seattle, Washington, and attended the University of Washington for his undergraduate studies. He later earned his M.S. in biological chemistry from New Mexico State University and his Ph.D. in biochemistry and biophysics from Oregon State University.

He spent his career at the University of Nevada, beginning as an assistant professor in the biology department and rising to associate professor in the biochemistry department. Dreiling received the Faculty Development Program Award and the Outstanding Teacher Award, among other honors.

He met his wife of 46 years, Penny Marie Kee, while in Seattle. After Kee’s death, Dreiling met and married his wife of five years, Nancy Lea McEnroe-O’Brien. Dreiling is survived by his wife; his children, Derek and Amy; and his brother, Tom.

Charles Dreiling

Erik Chaulk Erik Chaulk is a peer-review coordinator and digital publications web specialist at the ASBMB.