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Vol. LVII, No. 20
October 7, 2005

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2005 Pioneer Awardees Named

NIH director Dr. Elias Zerhouni announced 13 new recipients of the NIH Director's Pioneer Award on Sept. 29. The award supports exceptionally creative scientists who take innovative approaches to major challenges in biomedical research.

The new awardees, who will receive $500,000 in direct costs per year for 5 years, are:

  • Dr. Vicki L. Chandler, Regents' professor of plant sciences and molecular and cellular biology at the University of Arizona, who studies the control of gene expression.

  • Dr. Hollis Cline, a professor and director of research at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory who studies neural connectivity in the brain.

  • Dr. Leda Cosmides, a professor of psychology at the University of California, Santa Barbara, who applies evolutionary psychology to discover the design of the human mind and brain.

  • Dr. Titia de Lange, the Leon Hess professor and head of the laboratory of cell biology and genetics at Rockefeller University, who studies chromosome caps called telomeres.

  • Dr. Karl Deisseroth, an assistant professor of bioengineering and psychiatry at Stanford University who develops and employs new technology to probe neural circuits in the brain.

  • Dr. Pehr Harbury, an associate professor in the department of biochemistry at Stanford University School of Medicine who studies the chemical evolution of small molecules.

  • Dr. Erich Jarvis, an associate professor in the department of neurobiology at Duke University Medical Center whose research focuses on the molecular basis of vocal learning.

  • Dr. Thomas Rando, an associate professor in the department of neurology and neurological sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine who studies the role of stem cells in tissue repair and regeneration.

  • Dr. Derek J. Smith, a research associate in the department of zoology at the University of Cambridge in England and a research scientist in virology at Erasmus Medical Center in Rotterdam who uses mathematics to study the influenza virus and other rapidly evolving infectious agents.

  • Dr. Giulio Tononi, a professor in the department of psychiatry at the University of Wisconsin- Madison Medical School who studies the neural basis of consciousness and the function of sleep.

  • Dr. Clare Waterman-Storer, an associate professor in the department of cell biology at Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, Calif., who studies how cells change shape and move.

  • Dr. Nathan Wolfe, an assistant professor in the department of epidemiology at Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health who studies the emergence of infectious diseases.

  • Dr. Junying Yuan, a professor of cell biology at Harvard Medical School who will explore the possible existence of a novel cellular mechanism that detects and removes misfolded, neurotoxic proteins.

The recipients were selected from 840 scientists who underwent a rigorous nomination and evaluation process.

More information on the recipients is at

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