November 10, 2014

Ellison Medical Foundation Senior Scholars Gary Ruvkun, PhD (Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, 1998 Senior Scholar in Aging) and Victor Ambros, PhD (University of Massachusetts Medical School, 2012 Senior Scholar in Aging) are among six researchers named as recipients of the 2015 Breakthrough Prizes in Life Sciences. The Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences honors transformative advances toward understanding living systems and extending human life, with one prize dedicated to work that contributes to the understanding of Parkinson’s disease. Ruvkun and Ambros were recognized for the discovery of a new world of genetic regulation by microRNAs, a class of tiny RNA molecules that inhibit translation or destabilize complementary mRNA targets. Each received a $3 million award.

Other recipients of the 2015 Breakthrough Prizes in Life Sciences are:

Alim Louis Benabid, Joseph Fourier University, for the discovery and pioneering work on the development of high-frequency deep brain stimulation (DBS), which has revolutionized the treatment of Parkinson’s disease.

C. David Allis, The Rockefeller University, for the discovery of covalent modifications of histone proteins and their critical roles in the regulation of gene expression and chromatin organization, advancing the understanding of diseases ranging from birth defects to cancer.

Jennifer Doudna, University of California, Berkeley, Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and Emmanuelle Charpentier, Helmholtz Center for Infection Research and Umeå University, for harnessing an ancient mechanism of bacterial immunity into a powerful and general technology for editing genomes, with wide-ranging implications across biology and medicine.

April 29, 2014

EMF Senior Scholars in Aging James J. Collins, PhD (Boston University, Senior Scholar in 2007), Michael Green, MD (University of Massachusetts Medical School, Senior Scholar in 2009), and Jeff W. Lichtman, MD, PhD (Harvard University, Senior Scholar in 2003) have been named as members of the National Academy of Sciences.

The Academy announced the election of 84 new members and 21 foreign associates at the Academy’s annual meeting on April 29, 2014. Those elected bring the total number of active members to 2,214 and the total number of foreign associates to 444. Foreign associates are nonvoting members of the Academy, with citizenship outside the United States.The National Academy of Sciences is an honorific society of distinguished scientists and engineers dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and their use for the general welfare. It was established in 1863 by a congressional act of incorporation signed by Abraham Lincoln that calls on the Academy to act as an official adviser to the federal government, upon request, in any matter of science or technology. For further information, see:

April 23, 2014

The American Academy of Arts and Sciences, one of the nation's most prestigious honorary societies and an independent policy research center that conducts multidisciplinary studies of complex and emerging problems, has announced its 2014 Class of Fellows. Included in this group is Nancy Bonini, PhD, of the University of Pennsylvania, Senior Scholar in Aging in 2009. Academy Fellows across disciplines of science, the arts, business, and public affairs work together to provide analyses of social, political, and intellectual topics that challenge our society. For further information, see:

March 26, 2014

The Gairdner Foundation announced recently that Dr. Titia de Lange, PhD, Leon Hess Professor and Head of the Laboratory of Cell Biology and Genetics at Rockefeller University, and Ellison Medical Foundation Senior Scholar in Aging in 1999, is one of six recipients of the prestigious 2014 Canada Gairdner International Awards. Dr. de Lange was honored with this award for her discovery of the mechanisms by which mammalian telomeres are protected from deleterious DNA repair and damage responses. In work supported by the Ellison Medical Foundation, de Lange studied the role of telomeres in human health and in aging.

The awards, which are presented annually, recognize scientists responsible for some of the world’s most significant medical discoveries. The Canada Gairdner Awards will be presented at a dinner in Toronto on October 30th, 2014 as part of the Gairdner National Program, a two week lecture series given by Canada Gairdner Award winners at 24 universities across Canada from St John's to Vancouver. Each of the six 2014 Gairdner Award recipients will receive a $100,000 cash prize, which will be presented in Toronto in October. For further information, see:



September 24, 2013
The Ellison Medical Foundation is pleased to announce the New Scholar in Aging awardees for 2013. They are:
Murat Acar, PhD
Yale University
Systems Biology Approaches to Single-Cell Aging by using Novel Microfluidic Platforms
Michael Ailion, PhD
University of Washington
Modulation of the Aging Process by the Release of Neuroendocrine Signals from Dense-Core Vesicles
Nicola Allen, PhD
Salk Institute for Biological Studies
Astrocyte Regulation of Synaptic Plasticity and Repair in the Aging Brain
Adam J. Auton, PhD
Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University
Characterization of Deleterious Variation in Centenarian Genomes
Benoit Biteau, PhD
University of Rochester
Cell Fate Decisions and Differentiation in the Aging Drosophila Intestine
Robert K. Bradley, PhD
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Inhibition of RNA Quality Control in Differentiating and Aging Cells
Hu Cang, PhD
Salk Institute for Biological Studies
Develop Novel Single-Molecule Imaging Tools to Study Chromatin Modifiations in Cellular Sensecence
Stirling Churchman, PhD
Harvard Medical School
Mitochondrial Gene Expression Landscape of S. Cerevisiae During Aging and Life Span Extension