Whitehead Member Peter Reddien named HHMI Early Career Scientist

March 26, 2009

Tags: Reddien LabAwards + Announcements

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) has awarded Whitehead Member Peter Reddien an Early Career Scientist appointment, a six-year funded position that allows him to his pursue innovative biomedical research.

"I am thrilled to receive the HHMI Early Career Scientist position,” says Reddien.  “HHMI has a remarkable history of supporting innovative and creative science, and I am honored to have the future work of my laboratory supported by HHMI."

Reddien, who investigates regeneration in planaria flatworms, was selected from a pool of more than 2,000 applicants to become one of HHMI’s first 50 Early Career Scientists. 

“I'm delighted that HHMI has recognized that Peter, with his rare combination of scientific fearlessness and discipline, is an ideal recipient of their support,” says Whitehead Institute Director and HHMI Investigator David Page. “All of us at Whitehead and MIT congratulate Peter on being named to HHMI's first class of Early Career Scientists."

The selected scientists have been running their labs for between two and six years, a critical period in their careers when they tend to be more creative and adventurous in their work, but are also saddled with the stressful and time-consuming search for grants and other funding.

“We saw a tremendous opportunity for HHMI to impact the research community by freeing promising scientists to pursue their best ideas during this early stage of their careers,” says HHMI President Thomas Cech. “At the same time, we hope that our investment in these 50 faculty will free the resources of other agencies to support the work of other outstanding early career scientists.”

All award recipients work in basic biological and biomedical research and in areas of chemistry, physics, and computer science that are directly related to biology or medicine.

The prestigious appointment provides Reddien with full salary, benefits, and a research budget of a total of $1.5 million over six years. Other expenses, such as research space and the purchase of critical equipment, will also be funded by HHMI.

In addition to Reddien, three Whitehead alumni are receiving Early Career Scientist awards: Kevin Eggan (Jaenisch postdoctoral researcher), Harvard University;
Konrad Hochedlinger (Jaenisch postdoctoral researcher), Massachusetts General Hospital; and Brent Stockwell (Whitehead Fellow), Columbia University.

Written by Nicole Giese Rura.

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Peter Reddien’s primary affiliation is with Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, where his laboratory is located and all his research is conducted. He is also a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Early Career Scientist and an assistant professor of biology at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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Whitehead Institute is a world-renowned non-profit research institution dedicated to improving human health through basic biomedical research.
Wholly independent in its governance, finances, and research programs, Whitehead shares a close affiliation with Massachusetts Institute of Technology
through its faculty, who hold joint MIT appointments.

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