John is ASCB Senior Science Writer and the author among other things of two nonfiction books for older children, "Phineas Gage: A Gruesome But True Story About Brain Science" and "Black & White Airmen," both from Houghton-Mifflin-Harcourt, Boston.
Adolphus "Tol" Toliver, a prominent voice at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for active measures to support minority students and faculty pursuing careers in biology, died March 26, exactly two weeks short of his 82nd birthday.
Ruth G. Doell, an ASCB member from 1964 until her retirement from the Biology Department at San Francisco State University in 1992, died February 22 at her home in El Granada, CA. She was 86.
Francis Hugh Ruddle, a former ASCB President and a pioneer at Yale University in mapping the human genome and creating the first transgenic mouse, died March 10 in New Haven. He was 83.
DORA or to give its full name, the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment, continues to make friends and stir up dust. In an editorial in Cell entitled "June is the Cruelest Month," Emilie Marcus, the Executive Editor of Cell Press, gave a chilly reception to the arrival of the latest edition of the "two-year JIF," the journal citation algorithm from Thomson Reuters that rates scholarly publications for "impact." Marcus said that the JIF's flaws and its widespread abuse were well known in the scientific community and was ample justification for the DORA rebellion. Alas, Cell Press could not sign DORA, Marcus continued, "Because there were specific calls to action that we did not feel we could endorse as constructive and appropriate measures." Without specifying what was unconstructive or inappropriate, Marcus did continue, "We support the goals of DORA and add our voices and actions to bringing about change in how individual scientists are assessed for hiring, promotion, and tenure."
Actin's role in the nucleus comes packed in its very own black box. The cell nucleus is a very small and complex place but given how much is known about actin in the cytoplasm, it can be startling to hear how little agreement there is about actin in the nucleus.
Those with a million or two in loose change might want to sign up for a paddle this week at Christie's in New York for the auction of a 60-year-old, seven-page, handwritten, and illustrated letter from a father to his 12-year-old son away at boarding school.
John Charles Hutton, Professor of Pediatrics and Cellular & Developmental Biology and Research Director of the Barbara Davis Center for Childhood Diabetes, died December 18 in Denver. He was 64.
In July 2013, Dan Kiehart, chair of the Biology Department at Duke University, will become the dean of the Natural Sciences Division within Trinity College of Arts & Sciences, Duke's undergraduate liberal arts school. Kiehart, a Society member since 1980, currently serves on the ASCB Council.
The first elected chair of the Women In Cell Biology (WICB) committee, Ellen R. Dirksen, professor emeritus in Neurobiology at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine, died on January 5.
Lucy Shapiro, Stanford University, was at the White House February 1 to receive a 2011 National Medal of Science from President Barack Obama who described the medals as "the nation's highest honor for invention and discovery."