PHILADELPHIA — Mark A. Lemmon, PhD, chair of the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics at the Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, is the 2012 recipient of the Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin Award by The Protein Society. The award will be presented at the 26th Annual Symposium of The Protein Society in August, during the Plenary Awards Session.
The Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin Award, is given in recognition of exceptional contributions in protein science, which profoundly influence our understanding of biology. Dr. Lemmon is being recognized for major contributions to the field of signal transduction and transmembrane signaling mechanisms of receptor tyrosine kinases. Crystallographic, biochemical, and genetic studies from his laboratory have provided sophisticated understanding of EGFR cell signaling. His discoveries of the mechanisms for the epidermal growth factor receptor family offer new ideas for developing therapies targeting cancer and other human diseases.
"Of course, it's not really my work that this award honors, but really that of several fantastic Penn postdocs and students," says Lemmon. "First, I'd particularly like to single out Diego Alvarado, Daryl Klein, Sung Hee Choi, Jeannine Mendrola and Fumin Shi for the EGF receptor work that the award cites. They are all great examples of the superb scientists that Penn Medicine attracts — and reasons why it's so great to be here.
"Second, Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin has always been a hero of mine. She did much of her secondary education in the part of England where I grew up and was already a legend at Oxford when I went there. Her crystallographic studies of insulin -- well after her 1964 Nobel Prize -- inspired much of our structural work in EGF signaling. I always found it interesting too — given her politics - that Margaret Thatcher was one of Professor Hodgkin's most famous students."
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