Rockefeller president joins U.S. university leaders in Israel to explore collaborative opportunities

Rockefeller’s president, Marc Tessier-Lavigne, will join several U.S. university leaders in Israel this week to explore opportunities for collaborations with Israeli institutions in areas such as brain science, environmental sustainability, biotechnology, diversity and women’s leadership. The visit has been arranged by Project Interchange, a non-profit educational institute of the American Jewish Committee, which is an advocacy group based in New York. More »

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James E. Darnell Jr. elected to membership in American Philosophical Society

The society, founded by Benjamin Franklin in 1743, it is the United States’ first learned society, and unique among its peers for the wide variety of academic disciplines represented by its membership. Darnell is the university’s tenth faculty member to be inducted into the society. More »

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Scientists identify gene that regulates stem cell death and skin regeneration

A collaboration between researchers in Hermann Steller’s Strang Laboratory of Apoptosis and Cancer Biology and Elaine Fuchs’s Laboratory of Mammalian Cell Biology and Development has revealed a new function for a gene previously shown to prevent stem cells from turning cancerous. The gene, Sept4/ARTS, has now been shown to regulate programmed death in skin stem cells, a finding that may have implications for wound healing, regeneration and cancer. More »

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Jonathan Fisher receives Blavatnik Award for Young Scientists

Fisher is a postdoc in James Hudspeth’s Laboratory of Sensory Neuroscience studying the biophysics and neurophysiology of the auditory system. He is one of seven winners of the prize, which is given to faculty and postdocs in the tri-state area. More »

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17 students receive Ph.D.s at Rockefeller’s 55th Convocation

In addition to the graduating students, honorary degrees were awarded to two Nobel winning scientists and members of the Rockefeller faculty, Günter Blobel and Paul Greengard, as well as James H. Simons, a mathematician, investor and philanthropist, and his wife Marilyn Simons, president of the Simons Foundation. More »

Paul Nurse receives Albert Einstein World Award of Science

President emeritus and head of the Laboratory of Yeast Genetics and Cell Biology at Rockefeller, Nurse is being honored by the World Cultural Council for his long-term work as scientific leader committed to excellence in learning, research, health and education. More »

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Mutant mosquitoes lose their appetite for humans

Scientists in Leslie Vosshall’s Laboratory of Neurogenetics and Behavior at Rockefeller used a genetically modified mosquito to show that a specific gene called orco gives the insects a strong preference for humans over other mammals, and that the insect repellant DEET uses this pathway to deter mosquitoes from biting. More »

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Mike Young to receive Shaw Prize

Young and two colleagues will be awarded the 2013 Shaw Prize in Life Science and Medicine, worth $1 million. Established in 2002, the Shaw Prize honors individuals who have achieved breakthroughs in academic and scientific research or applications and whose work has resulted in a positive and profound impact on humanity. More »

Rockefeller hosts British Prime Minister David Cameron

Cameron’s May 15 visit to the university, part an effort by the British government to acknowledge the value and investment that U.S. biomedical research has in the UK, also included a tour of President Marc Tessier-Lavigne’s neuroscience laboratory and a meeting with Nobel Prize winning neurobiologist Paul Greengard. More »

Jean-Laurent Casanova appointed HHMI investigator

Casanova, whose research established for the first time that a predisposition to infectious diseases in children can be genetically determined, has been named one of 27 new investigators with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. His appointment brings the total number of Rockefeller scientists supported by HHMI to 16. More »

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Lewis Thomas Prize to be awarded to Kay Redfield Jamison

Jamison, a professor of psychiatry at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, has made extensive contributions to the field of psychology and is considered one of the country’s foremost authorities on manic-depressive bipolar illness. She is being honored for her 1993 book Touched with Fire: Manic-Depressive Illness and the Artistic Temperament, which examines the relationship between artistic creativity and mood disorders.
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Nobel laureate Christian de Duve dies at 95

Christian de Duve was a Nobel Prize winning cell biologist whose research centered on the separation and characterization of the organelles of living cells. de Duve and his colleagues also made significant contributions to the development of techniques and instrumentation for the study of cell biology. More »

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Scientists discover new way protein degradation is regulated

Researchers at The Rockefeller University and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute have identified the mechanism by which the cell’s protein recycler, the proteasome, ramps up its activity to take care of unwanted and potentially toxic proteins. The finding, which has implications for treating muscle wasting and neurodegeneration, also suggests that small molecule inhibitors of this mechanism may be clinically useful in treating multiple myeloma. More »

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Marc Tessier-Lavigne and Jeffrey Friedman elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Tessier-Lavigne, Rockefeller president and head of the Laboratory of Brain Development, and Jeffrey M. Friedman head of the Laboratory of Molecular Genetics, were elected to the honorary society and independent policy research center along with 198 other leaders in science, art, academia and the civic, corporate and philanthropic arenas. The current membership includes some 250 Nobel laureates and more than 60 Pulitzer Prize winners, and 23 other Rockefeller University faculty members are fellows.

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Rockefeller announces 31 percent reduction in carbon emissions

Five years after the university committed to reducing its carbon footprint as part of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s 2030 Carbon Challenge, Rockefeller was one of four participating universities that reached their target ahead of schedule. Bloomberg announced the results today at a press conference held in Rockefeller’s philosopher’s garden. More »

Scientists discover gene mutation that causes children to be born without spleen


An international team of scientists led by Rockefeller University researchers has identified the defective gene responsible for a rare disorder in which children are born without a spleen, which makes them susceptible to life-threatening bacterial infections early in life. The findings may lead to new diagnostic tests and raises new questions about the role of this gene in the body’s protein-making machinery.

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Scientists use Nature against Nature to develop an antibiotic with reduced resistance

Scientists at Rockefeller University and Astex Pharmaceuticals have discovered a new broad range antibiotic that kills a wide range of bacteria, including drug-resistant Staphylococcus (MRSA) bacteria that do not respond to traditional drugs, in mice. The antibiotic, Epimerox, targets weaknesses in bacteria that have long been exploited by viruses that attack them, known as phage.

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Mechanism of mutant histone protein in childhood brain cancer revealed

Scientists in David Allis’s laboratory have shown how a mutated histone protein inhibits an enzyme, which normally keeps cell growth in check, and causes a rare form of pediatric brain cancer called DIPG. Their findings reveal a mechanism for inhibiting enzymes and could lead to the development of pharmaceuticals that mimic the action of these mutant proteins.

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Howard Hang promoted to associate professor

Hang, a chemist who works to develop new tools for the study of host-pathogen interactions, has discovered that many proteins involved in host immunity to viruses and bacteria are regulated by fatty acid modifications.

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Researchers create map of “shortcuts” between all human genes

Researchers at Rockefeller University, along with colleagues at Necker Hospital for Sick Children and the Pasteur Institute in Paris and Ben-Gurion University in Israel, have generated the full set of distances, routes and degrees of separation between any two human genes, creating a map of gene “shortcuts” that aims to simplify the hunt for disease-causing genes in monogenic diseases. More »

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