C. David Allis to Receive the Third Annual Wiley Prize in the Biomedical Sciences
Deborah E. Wiley, Chairman of The Wiley Foundation, and Senior Vice President, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., today announced the recipient of the third annual Wiley Prize in the Biomedical Sciences.
"We are pleased to announce that the third annual Wiley Prize in the Biomedical Sciences will be awarded to C. David Allis, Ph.D., the recently appointed Joy and Jack Fishman Professor, Laboratory of Chromatin Biology and Epigenetics at the Rockefeller University in New York," said Ms. Wiley. "As part of bestowing this honor, we have invited him to deliver a lecture on April 21, 2004, at the Rockefeller University." Dr. Allis was until recently the Harry F. Byrd, Jr. Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Virginia Health System.
"David Allis has been selected to receive this year's Wiley Prize in the Biomedical Sciences for his significant discovery that transcription factors can enzymatically modify histones to regulate gene activity, " said Dr. Günter Blobel, recipient of the 1999 Nobel Prize awarded for Physiology or Medicine, and John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Professor of Cell Biology at the Rockefeller University. At the invitation of the Wiley Foundation, Professor Blobel serves as Chairman of the awards jury for the Wiley Prize. Other jury members include Dr. David J. Anderson, a developmental neurobiologist at the California Institute of Technology, and Dr. Qais Al-Awqati, a physiologist at Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons.
Dr. Allis' research explores the intricacies of chromatin, the DNA-protein complex that efficiently packages the genetic information inside each cell nucleus. By rendering some stretches of DNA more accessible than others to the cell's transcription machinery, chromatin plays a major role in regulating gene activity. Dr. Allis' studies of the chemical modifications that control chromatin structure and function are key to learning how to turn on genes that suppress tumor growth and switch off genes that promote it. His work has already led to breakthroughs in the treatment of certain leukemias and holds promise for many other forms of cancer.
The Wiley Prize in the Biomedical Sciences was created to recognize contributions that have opened new fields of research or have advanced novel concepts or their applications in a particular biomedical discipline. It honors a specific contribution or a series of contributions that demonstrate significant leadership and innovation. The award includes a $25,000 grant, and the opportunity to present a public lecture at the Rockefeller University, the venue for the awards ceremony.
This year's Wiley Prize will be the third award to be bestowed by the Wiley Foundation. Last year, the honor went to an international group of independent investigators — Dr. Andrew Z. Fire, of both the Carnegie Institution of Washington and the Johns Hopkins University; Dr. Craig C. Mello, of the University of Massachusetts Medical School; Dr. Thomas Tuschl, of the Rockefeller University; and Dr. David Baulcombe, of the Sainsbury Laboratory at the John Innes Centre in Norwich, England — for their respective contributions to discoveries of novel mechanisms for regulating gene expression by small interfering RNAs (siRNA).
One of the co-recipients of the inaugural Wiley Prize in the Biomedical Sciences, H. Robert Horvitz, was named as a Nobel Laureate in 2002. Dr. Horvitz, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, shared the first Wiley Prize with Dr. Stanley J. Korsmeyer of the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, for their independent contributions toward defining the genetic and molecular basis of programmed cell death, known as apoptosis. Dr. Horvitz subsequently shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Sydney Brenner, of the Molecular Sciences Institute in Berkeley, California, and Sir John Sulston, of the Sanger Center in Cambridge, United Kingdom, for their respective work on how genes regulate organ development and cell death.
Over the last century Wiley has developed a reputation for publishing and disseminating information on the most significant advances in science, technology, and medicine, contributed by prominent researchers and scientists from the community of scholars worldwide. "By creating the Wiley Foundation and the Wiley Prize in the Biomedical Sciences, Wiley wishes to acknowledge the contributions of the community of scholars to our corporate success, as well as to recognize and foster ongoing excellence in scientific achievement and discovery," explained Ms. Wiley.
Founded in 1807, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., provides must-have content and services to customers worldwide. Its core businesses include scientific, technical, and medical journals, encyclopedias, books, and online products and services; professional and consumer books and subscription services; and educational materials for undergraduate and graduate students and lifelong learners. Wiley has publishing, marketing, and distribution centers in the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia, and Australia. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbols JWa and JWb. Wiley's Internet site can be accessed at http://www.wiley.com.