7 Columbia Faculty Elected As Fellows Of American Association For The Advancement Of Science

November 25, 2006

Columbia’s Class of 2006 Includes World-Renowned Experts in Autoimmunity, Computational Biology, Neuroscience, Radiological Oncology & Women’s Reproductive Health

(New York) - Seven faculty members of Columbia University Medical Center have been elected to fellowship in the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), one of the world’s oldest, largest, and most prestigious scientific societies. The new fellows—who represent medical specialties and departments ranging from biochemistry and microbiology to radiation oncology and population research—join more than 440 additional inductees this year from across the nation.

“We are pleased to see Columbia University Medical Center represented so well among this year’s class of AAAS fellows,” said Lee Goldman, M.D., executive vice president of Columbia University and dean of the faculties of health sciences and medicine at Columbia University Medical Center. “This distinction points to the depth of our faculty talent and the breadth of our academic medicine enterprise. We are particularly proud of our seven gifted new fellows.”

Fellows—selected by the greater AAAS membership from among its own ranks—are awarded this special honor because of their efforts to advance scientific applications that are deemed especially promising or socially distinguished. Their names will be formally announced by the AAAS in the “News & Notes” section of the journal Science on Nov. 24, 2006. The official awards ceremony is scheduled to take place at the AAAS annual meeting in San Francisco, on Feb. 17, 2007.

The AAAS class of 2006 includes, in alphabetical order, the following Columbia University Medical Center faculty members:

Betty Diamond, M.D., the Dorothy L. and Daniel H. Silberberg Professor of Medicine, professor of microbiology, and chief of rheumatology: Dr. Diamond was cited for her research in the field of autoimmunity, particularly for her studies of the regulation of immune system cells and the disease-producing capacities of anti-DNA antibodies in the central nervous system. Lloyd A. Greene, Ph.D., professor of pathology in the Center for Neurobiology and Behavior: Dr. Greene was elected because of his contributions to our understanding of neuron development, differentiation, and survival, as well as for service to the greater medical community through his development of important new model systems in neurology. Barry Honig, Ph.D., professor of biochemistry and molecular biophysics: Dr. Honig was chosen because of his groundbreaking work in the field of computational biology, most notably for his characterization of protein structures via computer technologies and mathematical techniques. Thomas M. Jessell, Ph.D., Claire Tow Professor of Motor Neuron Disorders in Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics, Center for Neurobiology and Behavior: Dr. Jessell was selected for fellowship because of his seminal contributions to the field of developmental neurobiology, particularly for his clarification of how nerve cells in the developing spinal cord assemble into circuits that govern motor actions and sensory perception. Howard B. Lieberman, Ph.D., professor of radiation oncology: Dr. Lieberman was cited for his breakthrough work in cloning yeast, mouse and human Rad9, a protein that, among other things, is known to check for DNA damage, has been found to repair DNA breaks, and is a key actor in the regulation of radioresistance in cancer therapy. Carol A. Mason, Ph.D., professor of pathology in the Center for Neurobiology and Behavior: Dr. Mason was honored for her work in the fields of neuroanatomy and developmental neurobiology, most notably for her studies of the mechanisms of axon guidance and development of the mammalian visual system. Constance Nathanson, Ph.D., professor of clinical sociomedical sciences in the Mailman School of Public Health: Dr. Nathanson was selected for her award-winning research on female adolescent sexuality, for her major contributions to the study of women’s reproductive health, and for strong scientific leadership in population research. # # #

Columbia University Medical Center provides international leadership in pre-clinical and clinical research, in medical and health sciences education, and in patient care. The medical center trains future leaders and includes the dedicated work of many physicians, scientists, nurses, dentists, and public health professionals at the College of Physicians & Surgeons, the College of Dental Medicine , the School of Nursing , the Mailman School of Public Health, the biomedical departments of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and allied research centers and institutions. www.cumc.columbia.edu

Founded in 1848, the nonprofit American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) is the world’s largest general scientific society, including some 262 affiliated societies and academies of science and serving 10 million individuals. The AAAS is also the publisher of the journal Science (www.sciencemag.org), which has the largest paid circulation of any peer-reviewed general science journal in the world, with an estimated total readership of 1 million. The AAAS (www.aaas.org) is open to all and fulfills its mission to “advance science and serve society” through initiatives in science policy, international programs, science education, and more.

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AAAS, Computational Biology, DNA, Mailman School