February 2011

Christine Guthrie recognized with ASBMB-Merck Award

Christine Guthrie, a leading figure in the field of RNA processing and a dedicated mentor to young scientists, has been named the winner of the 2011 American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology-Merck Award.

 

“I am just delighted to receive this award. I am deeply honored to be included in the august company of the previous recipients and profoundly indebted to the long succession of remarkable students and fellows who have made this possible.”
– CHRISTINE GUTHRIE

Christine Guthrie, a leading figure in the field of RNA processing and a dedicated mentor to young scientists, has been named the winner of the 2011 American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology-Merck Award.

Guthrie, a major contributor to the development of yeast as a model system for studying cell biology, was nominated by Yale University’s Joan Steitz, who says of the winner, “Christine Guthrie’s pioneering advances have relied on her innovative coupling of biochemistry and genetics starting from the beginning of her distinguished career. Christine is not only an inspiring role model to her peers and to younger scientists, but her mentorship has guided the careers of a number of today’s leaders in the RNA field worldwide.”

Guthrie, a professor of biochemistry at the University of California, San Francisco, first identified small nuclear RNAs in yeast, which initiated a genetic study of the roles of those RNAs in the spliceosome process. In addition, she isolated a large number of yeast mutants defective in splicing and established the point in the splicing cycle that required each mutant protein.

“Her body of work has been recognized both nationally and internationally,” says Phillip A. Sharp, a professor at the David H. Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at the Massachusetts Institute for Technology. “Her papers are novel and superbly written, and I am frequently spellbound by her lectures, for she is an eloquent orator who skillfully uses humor and substance.”

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