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5 IU scientists named AAAS Fellows for their notable contributions

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- The American Association for the Advancement of Science has awarded the distinction of fellow to five Indiana University faculty members in recognition of their scientifically distinguished efforts to advance science.

The new fellows for 2013 include Dr. Bernardino Ghetti from the IU School of Medicine in Indianapolis, Provost Professor Olaf Sporns from the IU Bloomington College of Arts and Sciences' Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, and three members of the College's Department of Biology: Emeritus Professor Peter T. Cherbas and professors Elizabeth C. Raff and Malcolm E. Winkler. The announcement brings the total number of AAAS Fellows affiliated with IU to 86.

IU President Michael A. McRobbie congratulated the five scholars on being recognized by an organization of peers that represents the largest general scientific society in the world, with 261 affiliated societies and academies of science that serve 10 million individuals.

"These five individuals have dedicated their lives to taking on intellectual challenges the answers to which mean to address and resolve some of society's most vexing issues -- from understanding and combating Alzheimer's to advancing the field of genomics for the purpose of promoting public health," McRobbie said. "We are indebted to each of them for their long and distinguished service to both Indiana University and to mankind."

IU School of Medicine Dean Jay L. Hess called Ghetti, a faculty member in the School of Medicine's Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, a pioneer in his field who is respected by peers around the world.

"We are pleased that Dr. Ghetti has received this well-deserved recognition," Hess said, "and are all called to now work toward that same standard of excellence that the members of AAAS have recognized in him."

IU Bloomington College of Arts and Sciences Dean Larry Singell said the four scientists from the College exemplified the sustained intellectual achievement required before society-changing discoveries can occur.

"These four are the architects of discovery, tireless investigators in their respective fields who serve as visible models not only for us here at the College, but now, with this recognition, for all future scientists," Singell said.

The fellows from Indiana University, along with the AAAS citation of merit, are:

  • Emeritus Professor Peter T. Cherbas, Department of Biology
    For distinguished contributions to developmental biology, particularly the role of ecdysone in the regulation of transcription and metamorphosis in Drosophila.

  • Distinguished Professor Bernardino Ghetti, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
    For pioneering contributions to our understanding of the pathogenetic mechanisms underlying hereditary neurodegenerative diseases, and to their identification and treatment.

  • Professor Elizabeth C. Raff, Department of Biology
    For distinguished contributions to the field of the microtubule cytoskeleton, particularly for demonstrating the role of distinct tubulin isoforms in specification of three-dimensional structure.

  • Provost Professor Olaf Sporns, Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences
    For distinguished contributions to the field of theoretical and computational neuroscience, particularly for network studies of the structural and functional connectivity of the human brain.

  • Professor Malcolm E. Winkler, Department of Biology
    For distinguished contributions to the areas of bacterial metabolism, physiology and molecular genetics in Gram-negative model bacteria, and in the Gram-positive respiratory pathogen Streptococcus pneumoniae.

This year, AAAS has awarded this honor to 388 members because of their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. New fellows will be presented with an official certificate and a gold and rosette pin Feb. 15 at the AAAS Fellows Forum during the 2014 AAAS Annual Meeting in Chicago.


Contact: Stephen Chaplin
Indiana University

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