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22 of America's Most Promising Scientists Selected as 2011 Pew Scholars in the Biomedical Sciences

PHILADELPHIA, June 14, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Twenty-two of America's most promising scientists have been named Pew Scholars in the Biomedical Sciences by The Pew Charitable Trusts.  The 2011 Pew Scholars will join a select community that includes MacArthur Fellows, recipients of the Albert Lasker Medical Research Award and three Nobel Prize winners.  Research by the new class of Scholars is related to many human diseases ranging from Alzheimer's to diabetes to ocular degeneration. The program encourages early-career scientists to advance research that leads to important medical breakthroughs and treatments.

"Pew is pleased to provide this country's most ambitious and dedicated scientists with timely funding that enables them to explore novel areas of investigation early in their careers, at what may be the most inventive and creative period in their research," said Rebecca W. Rimel, president and CEO of The Pew Charitable Trusts.


To date, the program has invested more than $125 million to fund over 500 scholars. It is a rigorously competitive program where recipients receive $240,000 over four years to pursue their research without restriction. Applicants who work in all areas of physical and life sciences related to biomedical study must be nominated by an invited institution and demonstrate both excellence and innovation in their research. This year, 175 institutions were requested to nominate a candidate and 136 eligible nominations were received.

"Early recognition of young scientists with ideas that challenge their fields is essential for the vitality of the biomedical sciences," said Craig C. Mello, Ph.D., a 1995 Pew Scholar, a 2006 Nobel Laureate in Physiology or Medicine and the chair of the national advisory committee for the program. "From my own experience as a Pew Scholar and member of the advisory board, this program gives young scientists the confidence to pursue risky projects, and to push the boundaries of their fields, planting the seeds for major scientific advancements.  I welcome these promising scientists into the Pew Biomedical Scholars family and look forward to watching as their research unfolds in the years ahead."

The new 2011 Pew Scholars are:

  • Christine M. Dunham, Ph.D.

  • Emory University School of Medicine Structural Biology and Pathogenesis

  • Thomas G. Fazzio, Ph.D.

  • University of Massachusetts Medical SchoolStem Cell Biology

  • Max L. Fletcher, Ph.D.

  • University of Tennessee Health Science CenterNeuroscience

  • Hunter B. Fraser, Ph.D.

  • Stanford UniversityGene Regulation

  • Melissa K. Gardner, Ph.D.

  • University of MinnesotaCell Biology and Biophysics

  • Mary Gehring, Ph.D.

  • Whitehead Institute for Biomedical ResearchGene Regulation and Epigenetics

  • Jeff Gore, Ph.D.

  • Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyBiophysics and Systems Biology

  • Takaki Komiyama, Ph.D.

  • University of California, San DiegoNeuroscience

  • Mei Kong, Ph.D.

  • Beckman Institute, City of Hope Cancer Cell Biology

  • Michael S. Kuhns, Ph.D.

  • University of ArizonaImmunology

  • Erica Larschan, Ph.D.

  • Brown UniversityEpigenetics

  • Eros Lazzerini Denchi, Ph.D.

  • Scripps Research InstituteAging and Stem Cell Biology

  • Ann C. Morris, Ph.D.

  • University of KentuckyDevelopmental Neurobiology and Genetics

  • James B. Moseley, Ph.D.

  • Dartmouth Medical SchoolCell Biology

  • Suzanne M. Nobel, M.D., Ph.D.

  • University of California, San FranciscoFungal Pathogenesis

  • Brad J. Nolen, Ph.D.

  • University of OregonStructural Biology

  • Chad G. Pearson, Ph.D.

  • University of Colorado, DenverCell Biology

  • Sharad Ramanathan, Ph.D.

  • Harvard University Neuroscience and Systems Biology

  • Anthony R. Richardson, Ph.D.

  • University of North Carolina at Chapel HillMicrobiology and Immunology

  • Niels Ringstad, Ph.D.

  • New York University School of MedicineNeuroscience

  • Georgios Skiniotis, Ph.D.

  • University of MichiganStructural Biology and Membrane Biology

  • Liang Zhou, M.D., Ph.D.

  • Northwestern UniversityImmunology and Gene RegulationFor full biographies and information regarding the scholars' research, please visit

    The Pew Charitable Trusts ( is driven by the power of knowledge to solve today's most challenging problems. Pew applies a rigorous, analytical approach to improve public policy, inform the public and stimulate civic life. We partner with a diverse range of donors, public and private organizations and concerned citizens who share our commitment to fact-based solutions and goal-driven investments to improve society.

    SOURCE The Pew Charitable Trusts
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