The 2011 Croonian Lecture has been awarded to John Ellis for his pioneering contributions to biochemistry, molecular cell biology and plant sciences. Ellis, an Emeritus Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Warwick in the UK, is the author of the Springer book How Science Works: Evolution.
Dr. Ellis earned his doctorate in 1960 from King's College, London, and completed postdoctoral studies at Oxford University. In 1970, he moved to the newly founded Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Warwick as Senior Lecturer and Head of the Chloroplast Research Group.
For much of his time at the University of Warwick, Ellis' work focused on how the proteins essential for photosynthesis in plants are synthesized and then transported within plant cells to the chloroplasts, the intracellular structures within which they function. In 1976 he was awarded a Personal Chair in the department and in 1983 was elected to the Royal Society.
The Croonian Lectures are prestigious lectureships given at the invitation of the Royal Society and the Royal College of Physicians. They are named after Dr. Croone, one of the original members of the Society, who died in 1684. His wife provided the bequest in 1701 specifying that it was "for the support of a lecture and illustrative experiment for the advancement of natural knowledge."
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