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NIH Record Awardees

Society for Neurochemistry Honors Murphy

Dr. Eric J. Murphy, a fellow in the National Institute on Aging's Laboratory of Neurosciences, received the Jordi Folch-Pi Memorial Award from the American Society for Neurochemistry at this year's meeting in New Orleans. The Folch-Pi Award, the premiere achievement award from the society, annually recognizes the early-career scientist who has made outstanding contributions to neuroscience research. Murphy is studying the role of altered lipid metabolism in several neurological disorders including stroke, spinal cord injury, Alzheimer's disease and Down syndrome.

Wilson Award to Capt. Holcomb

Capt. William F. Holcomb, training officer in the Radiation Safety Branch, recently won the 1999 Robert E. Wilson Award of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers "in recognition of his outstanding contributions to nuclear chemical engineering in radioactive waste management, fuel reprocessing and fabrication, governmental regulatory activities, and radiation safety training." A member of the Commissioned Corps for the past 25 years, Holcomb has, since 1990, helped train some 54,000 people — including researchers, nurses, police, firefighters, and housekeepers — in over 2,000 courses. He has published more than 100 papers, articles and book chapters in his field.

Grantee Honored by U Va. Patent Foundation

Dr. John C. Herr, a professor of cell biology and director of a center for contraceptive vaccines at the University of Virginia, has been named the Christopher J. Henderson Inventor of the Year by the University of Virginia Patent Foundation.

Herr, whose studies have been supported by NICHD's Contraceptive and Reproductive Evaluation Branch, has studied human sperm and their anatomical and molecular characteristics for the past 20 years and over the past decade has filed and received a number of patents related to his research, which has applications in contraception and fertility diagnosis.

The U.Va. Patent Foundation award recognizes an invention that has proven to be of notable value to society. Herr's laboratory is developing two product lines based on his research in the molecular anatomy of sperm. The first products are kits that enable men to conduct sperm counts at home. The second line of products concern a contraceptive vaccine for women.

Kirschstein Accepts Honorary Doctorates

NIH deputy director Dr. Ruth Kirschstein was honored May 31 with a doctorate honoris causa at the 231st annual commencement exercises at Brown University. The board of fellows at Brown recognized her "distinguished career, accomplishments, and contributions to science and health care."

Last spring, the University of Rochester School of Medicine conferred upon Kirschstein an honorary doctor of science degree recognizing her "distinguished career as a scientist, researcher and physician," and her service at NIH. Kirschstein briefly addressed the M.D. graduates at that commencement.

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