Three Chicago scholars named AAAS fellowsBy Steve Koppes and Maja Fiket
News Office, Medical Center Communications
Three University scholars—Raphael Lee, Ursula Storb and President Zimmer— have been awarded the distinction of fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. They are among 471 members who have been awarded the honor this year for their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications.
New fellows will be presented with an official certificate and a gold and blue (representing science and engineering, respectively) rosette pin on Saturday, Feb. 16, 2008, during the AAAS annual meeting in Boston. This year’s fellows also were announced in the AAAS News & Notes section of the Friday, Oct. 26 issue of the journal Science.
Raphael Lee, Professor in Surgery and Director of the Center for Research of Molecular Cell Repair, is an internationally recognized expert in plastic surgery, burn trauma and bioengineering.
His research focuses on developing molecular regeneration strategies to treat trauma-related injuries. Specifically, Lee’s work involves therapeutic approaches to restore proper molecular form and function to injured cells. Typically, injured cells have disrupted cell membranes and their proteins tend to change structure and lose biological function. Lee’s research team has developed biocompatible surfactants, or surface-active agents, that can seal disrupted cell membranes in injured cells and help proteins regain their original structure and function.
Lee is a member of numerous academic associations, including the American College of Surgeons and the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineers. He has authored four books, nearly 200 research articles and many patents, and he has founded four technology companies. In addition to being named a MacArthur Fellow and a Searle Scholar, Lee also has received more than 20 research awards and honorary degrees.
Ursula Storb, Professor in Molecular Genetics & Cell Biology and the College, is a world-renowned expert in immunology and molecular biology.
Her research focuses on studying B lymphocytes, cells that produce antibodies, and the control of expression of immunoglobulin genes, which encode antibodies for immunity. She also studies the role of epigenetics in embryonic development.
She has published more than 150 papers in various scientific journals, including Science, Nature, Cell, Immunity and Nature Immunology.
Storb earned her medical degree from the University of Freiburg in Germany and joined the Chicago faculty in 1986. She is a recipient of the University’s Llewellyn John and Harriet Manchester Quantrell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, which she won in 1991. She has been a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences since 1992, and she is a member of the Scientific Advisory Council of the Cancer Research Institute.
President Zimmer, Professor in Mathematics and the Physical Sciences Collegiate Division, was cited by the association for highly regarded and important contributions to ergodic theory, Lie groups and differential equations, and for his commitment to responsible administration of university affairs.
Zimmer is a specialist in geometry, particularly ergodic theory, Lie groups and differential geometry and is the author of two books, Ergodic Theory and Semisimple Groups (1984) and Essential Results of Functional Analysis (1990).
He also is the author of more than 80 mathematical research articles. The recipient of an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation fellowship, Zimmer also served on the Board of Mathematical Sciences of the National Research Council from 1992 to 1995, and was on the executive committee from 1993 to 1995.
Zimmer has been a faculty member at the U.S. Naval Academy, the University of California, Berkeley, and Brown University as well as at Chicago. In addition to his teaching and research, Zimmer has served in many administrative capacities at Chicago and Brown University.
At Chicago, he has completed terms as Chairman of the Mathematics Department, Deputy Provost, and Vice President for Research and for Argonne National Laboratory. Formerly the Provost of Brown University, he was named President of the University of Chicago in 2006.
His current responsibilities include serving as Chairman of the Board of Directors of UChicago-Argonne LLC, which manages Argonne National Laboratory for the U.S. Department of Energy, and as Chairman of Fermi Research Alliance LLC, which manages Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory for the DOE.
The American Association for the Advancement of Science is the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of the journal, Science (www.sciencemag.org).
It was founded in 1848 and includes some 262 affiliated societies and academies of science, serving 10 million individuals. The non-profit AAAS (www.aaas.org) is open to all and fulfills its mission to “advance science and serve society” through initiatives in science policy, international programs, science education and more.