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Vilcek Foundation honors renowned neuroscientist and young researchers with creative promise
Date:1/28/2014

the brain sciences. Jessell's work has received numerous honors, including the Kavli Prize in Neuroscience and Canada's Gairdner International Award. He is an investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, a co-director of the Columbia/Kavli Institute for Brain Science, a fellow of the Royal Society, a foreign associate of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, and a member of the Institute of Medicine.

Jessell completed his PhD in neuropharmacology at Cambridge University in the United Kingdom and came to the United States in 1978 as a post-doctoral fellow in the lab of neurobiologist Gerald Fischbach, at Harvard University. He took a faculty position in the Neurobiology Department at Harvard Medical School, and in 1985 was appointed as a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator at Columbia University in New York City.

The Vilcek Foundation is also awarding the Vilcek Prizes for Creative Promise in Biomedical Science to three foreign-born scientists, age 38 or younger, for exceptional accomplishments early in their career. Each winner will receive a $35,000 cash award.

Antonio Giraldez is an associate professor and director of Graduate Studies in Genetics at Yale University, where he focuses on the question of how microRNAs and other non-coding RNAs shape gene expression during embryonic development. He applies a wide range of knowledge in genomics, developmental biology, and stem cell biology with computational science to examine the role of microRNAs and non-coding RNAs. Recently, he found that the microRNA family, miR-430, is responsible for the clearance of maternal mRNAs, providing insight into the mechanisms of how microRNAs regulate gene expression. He also discovered the stem cell factors that activate gene expression in the fertilized egg. These findings are important to understand the very first steps that lead to the making of an embryo after fertilization. Giraldez was born in Spain.

Stavros Lo
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Contact: Phuong Pham
phuong@vilcek.org
212-472-2500
Vilcek Foundation
Source:Eurekalert

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