News Archive

 

Bioimaging: Exploring Life in the Fourth Dimension

August 29, 2002

When Anton Van Leeuwenhoek first transformed a small glass ball into a magnifying lens, he opened a new window into the world of scientific discovery. Four centuries and millions of magnifications later, researchers are able to see the inner workings of the cell and use their observations to unravel many mysteries of life.

Whitehead Member Gerald Fink Receives Lifetime Achievement Award

August 5, 2002

Whitehead Member Gerald Fink got a rousing "thank you" today from his colleagues in the field of yeast biology. The heartfelt recognition came in the form of the inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award given at the biennial Yeast Genetics and Molecular Biology Meeting in Madison, Wisconsin. The breadth and depth of his achievements made the decision to select Fink as the first recipient of the award "a slam dunk" choice, said Tom Fox of Cornell University and a former student of Fink's, who presented the award.

Harvey Lodish Elected President of the American Society for Cell Biology

July 20, 2002

Whitehead Member Harvey F. Lodish was elected President of the 10,000-member American Society for Cell Biology for the year 2004. Since its founding in 1960, the American Society for Cell Biology has brought together experts in the varied facets of cell biology to advance scientific knowledge, increase public awareness of the importance of biomedical research, and guide national policy on the education, training, and career development of biomedical researchers.

Queen of England Honors BOA Member Una S. Ryan

June 24, 2002

Britain's Queen Elizabeth the Second, in her Birthday Honors List, recently awarded Whitehead Board of Associates (BOA) member Una Scully Ryan, with the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for her services to research, development, and the promotion of biotechnology.

Systems Biology: Creating the Circuits of Life

June 17, 2002

Whitehead Fellow Trey Ideker often thinks of himself as an engineer and the cell as a circuit. “I see myself looking at all the wires at once to understand how they work with each other and then making the wiring diagrams,” he says. “I want to know which wires are used for what—for example, which wires short-circuit to cause cancer and which need to stay active to keep the body healthy.” Ideker’s approach to understanding cell circuitry, an approach known as systems biology, is part of a new research initiative that is shifting biological science from the local to the global, from the parts to the whole.

Building a New Paradigm in Drug Discovery

May 22, 2002

It’s no secret that drug development is a painfully slow and expensive process—a typical new drug takes 15 years and $500 million to come to market, costing the pharmaceutical industry some $20 billion annually. That’s because finding a drug candidate and developing it into a treatment for disease is largely a matter of luck. To make drug discovery a more targeted science, we need to identify the complete set of all human proteins and develop tools to study them in parallel," says Whitehead Fellow David Sabatini, who was chosen as one of the world’s 100 Top Young Innovators by Technology Review magazine.

Scientists Find Protein at the Intersection of Genetics, Development and the Environment

May 13, 2002

Environmental stress can reveal hidden genetic variation in plants, resulting in novel traits that might provide an alternative to genetic modification of crops, researchers report in the journal Nature. They have linked this phenomenon to the actions of a particular molecule, the heat stress protein Hsp90. These findings place Hsp90 at the interface of environment and genetics and potentially provide an explanation for a long-standing evolutionary puzzle: how do large changes in form and function requiring the synchronous alteration of several features occur during evolution?

Gairdner Foundation Awards Eric S. Lander with International Award for Achievement

April 25, 2002

Eric Lander, Director of the Whitehead Institute Center for Genomic Research, is one of eight scientists to win the 2002 Gairdner Awards, considered one of the most prestigious international awards in medical research. Lander and the other winners were recognized for their outstanding contributions in genomic research.

Daley receives Burroughs Wellcome Fund Award

March 11, 2002

The Burroughs Wellcome Fund (BWF) in Research Triangle Park, NC, has named Whitehead Fellow George Daley one of six physician-scientists to receive Clinical Science Awards in Translational Research for 2003.

Scientists Combine Therapeutic Cloning, Embryonic Stem Cells, and Gene Therapy to Correct a Genetic Defect in Mice

March 7, 2002

While the promise of nuclear transplantation therapy, commonly referred to as “therapeutic cloning,” has given hope to patients, like Christopher Reeve, and excited the research community and the public, it has never been successfully demonstrated.

Nobel Laureate David Baltimore Tackles Issues of Trust

February 19, 2002

From the September 11th attack on the World Trade Center to the Enron scandal, we are bombarded by the break down of trust in society. Drawing upon personal experience and world events, David Baltimore, the founding director of the Whitehead Institute and current president of the California Institute of Technology, tackled these issues in a talk entitled “Building a Community on Trust,” held on February 18 in Kresge Auditorium.

Scientists Establish Link Between DNA Replication and Gene Expression

December 12, 2001

Faced with an infection, the human body’s first line of defense is to produce millions of antibodies to neutralize the infection. Orchestrating this defense is the human immune cell called the B cell, which has the amazing ability to produce an army of antibodies, each a replica of the other and each tailor made for a specific infectious agent. In fact, maternal and paternal copies of genes can produce antibodies that are not exact replicas, so the B cell must silence one of them to avoid disorders of the immune system. But how a B cell pulls off this stunt has been a mystery.

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