Do You Need a Postdoc, a Research Associate or Senior Colleague?
Look to the ASCB first to fill a vacancy by placing your recruitment advertisement in the monthly ASCB Newsletter.
Contact: Rick Sommer
Grants and Opportunities Sceience and Technology Policy Graduate Student/Post-Doctorate Internship Program of the National Research Council
Internships are designed to engage science, engineering, medical, and law students in the creation of science and technology policy and to familiarize them with the interactions of science and government. The interns will spend about 10 weeks working in one of the commissions of the National Research Council or the programs of the NAS, NAE, or Institute of Medicine.
The 1998 summer internship program will occur from June 1, 1998 to August 7, 1998.
For more information contact Email; Fax (202) 334-1667 call (202) 334-2455 or write NRC Internship Program c/o Dr. Deborah D. Stine National Research Council, Room 242 2101 Constitution Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20418.
A Postdoctoral Position is available starting Spring 1998 to join active group studying the translational regulation of Xenopus maternal mRNAs involved in meiotic maturation and early embryogenesis including the study of 3'UTR elements and RNA-binding proteins. Applicants must have excellent background in molecular biology. Experience in protein-RNA interaction and biochemistry would be desirable. Send CV to: Thomas Musci, Department of OB/GYN, University of California, San Francisco CA 94143-0556. Email. EOE/AA.
The Department of Otolaryngology-HNS at the University of Washington is seeking candidates for the non-tenure track position of Research Assistant Professor. The candidate should be a PhD with a background in anatomy and neurobiology. He/she should have at least 5 years postdoctoral experience in the study of hair cell regeneration in the avian species with complementary skills in cell culture, confocal microscopy, and molecular biology. Submit CVs to: Edwin Rubel, Ph.D., Department of Otolaryngology-HNS, University of Washington, Box 357923, Seattle WA 98195. EOE/AA.
Postdoctoral Position. Universities Space Research Association (USRA) has immediate opening in the Biotechnology Advanced Technology group at NASA Johnson Space Center. PhD in bioengineering, cell biology, developmental biology, or related field required. Experience in mammalian tissue culture techniques, basic molecular biology methodology and mutagenesis assays required. Experience in tissue engineering and subculturing cells on scaffold materials desirable. Good written and oral communication skills required. Send CV, summary of research experience and 3 references by 4/1/98 to: T. K. Jones; USRA/DSLS; 3600 Bay Area Blvd; Houston TX 77058; Fax: (281) 244-2006; Email EOE/AA.
A Postdoctoral Research Fellow position is available for studies on the Dictyostelium Rap protein. This protein is a member of the Ras subfamily of monomeric G-proteins and is highly conserved in all eucaryotic species thus far studied (mammals, Drosophila, C. elegans, and Dictyostelium). Its role in the cell remains a mystery, but there is evidence that under certain conditions it can antagonize Ras function. The approach will be to ablate gene function and determine the consequence of this on growth and development and to search for interacting proteins. The position is funded by a Canadian MRC grant and is for at least two and possibly three years. Please submit application, cv, together with the names of three referees to: Dr. George Spiegelman, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of British Columbia, #300 6l74 University Boulevard Vancouver BC V6T lZ3. Phone. (604) 822-2036, Fax (604) 822-6041.
Postdoctoral Position. Our lab studies the cell biology & biochemistry of myosin assembly in Dictyostelium. Project will focus on regulation of myosin heavy chain kinases in this system (see JBC 272:11812 and JBC 272: 16904). Experience in protein biochemistry or biology of the cytoskeleton desired. Send two letters of recommendation and CV to Tom Egelhoff, Department. of Physiology, Case Western Reserve School of Medicine, Cleveland OH 44106-4970. Email EOE/AA.
Two Postdoctoral Positions are available immediately to study the sorting, secretion and function of neuroprotective peptides in neuroendocrine cells. Preferred candidates have previous experience with molecular cloning, mammalian cell culture, immunoassays and less than 5 years of postdoctoral experience. Lab info. Send CV and 3 letters of reference to: Sven-Ulrik Gorr, PhD, Department of Biological and Biophysical Sciences, University of Louisville Health Sciences Center, Louisville KY 40292. EOE/AA.
Military Research Lab is Closing: Military contractor is selling at dramatically reduced prices its Perkin-Elmer PDS Microdensitometer; Joyce, Loebl microdensitometer; Sorvall ultra microtomes; Reichert Polycut S motorized sliding microtome; refrigerated and rotary microtomes; LKB knife cutter; AO knife sharpener; Gatan dual ion mill and stereo microscopes. For spec sheets, call (202) 544-0836.
The following posters, presented at the MAC poster session at the Annual Meeting, were recognized for scientific excellence by the ASCB Minorities Affairs Committee. Monetary awards were provided by Pfizer, Inc. and the Leadership Alliance.
Society Committees Meet
Public Information Committee Welcomes New Chair
The goal of the Committee is to educate the public about science. At the Committee's urging, the Society has consistently supported the summer science writer's workshop at the Marine Biology Laboratory at Woods Hole. There was discussion about expanding this program to include Congressional staffers, but such a program would have to be separate from the existing Workshop involving members of the press. Members of the Committee will work to develop this proposal.
The group assessed the two ASCB press books that were developed in 1997: the 1997 ASCB Annual Meeting Hot Topics Press Book, and the 1997 ASCB Annual Meeting Selected Biomedical Abstracts. The Committee, which helped develop both publications, was particularly pleased with the Hot Topics book and suggested that it be sent to every Member of Congress. This was the first year of its publication; it was edited by Iris Kedar, an ASCB summer intern who is a medical student at Harvard. The Committee hopes to commission a similar booklet for next year's meeting, well in advance of the ASCB abstract deadline, which it felt would be best accomplished by an independent science writer. Also discussed were ways to develop television coverage of science topics.
Wilson described her highest priorities: (1) that a part time science writer be hired, and (2) that the ASCB Website be aggressively developed to promote public information by links to science, provide ideas for articles to free-lance writers, and sell t-shirts and other educational items to generate income for the Committee and Society. The science writer would work to promote the research of Society members as well as maintain the Website. Wilson will develop a detailed proposal to present to Council Goldman suggested that the ASCB should work with the American Association for the Advancement of Science to benefit from the AAAS's existing public information program.
MAC Introduces New Members, New Programs
Haynes reviewed the 1998 budget and emphasized that programs funded by grants must meet the criteria of the program as described in the grant application. Haynes announced that the MAC has received permission from NIH/MARC to use unexpended 1997 grant funds to support summer students at the University of Washington Friday Harbor Laboratories and the Minorities Saturday Session prior to the ASCB Annual Meeting. Friday Harbor will share summer student costs with the ASCB.
Vice Chair Donella Wilson reviewed 1997 MAC activities, encouraging the Committee to build on previous successes. Using the Undergraduate Minorities Summer Fellowship listing as an example, Wilson encouraged Joe Hall to incorporate links to other summer program lists such as Howard Hughes and the National Science Foundation. Hall is enlarging the listing to include corporate and nonprofit programs, thus creating a comprehensive national resource.
David Burgess, former MAC member and incoming president of the Society for Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) invited participation by the ASCB in the SACNAS Annual Meeting. He requested funds to support a platform presentation on a cell biology topic to be presented by a panel of three minority cell biologists and to support ten students to attend the meeting. The Committee expressed enthusiasm about participation in SACNAS activities and has budgeted funds to support a booth at the 1998 SACNAS meeting.
Joseph Mazurkiewicz of the Histochemical Society encouraged the continued support by the MAC of Histochemical Society Workshops. The Committee will continue its participation; Dan Friend, although no longer a Committee member, will continue to review the Workshop applications.
Andrea Morris of Princeton University reported on the 1997 Saturday Special Session for Minorities. Morris and Sonya Summerour of the University of California, San Diego, coordinated the Session, which was held in coordination with the 1997 Leadership Alliance Symposium. Over 100 participants representing undergraduates through established scientists participated.
Additional MAC programs discussed at the meeting include:
WICB Committee Launches Resource Bureau
Column assignments were determined for the next six months.
Kane solicited the assistance of Committee members in establishing logistics for the evening WICB program, Couples in Cell Biology. The Committee agreed that written questions would be accepted by the moderator and read to the panelists, and that where possible, Committee members would follow up individual questions if time did not permit them to be presented during the meeting.
The Women's Resource Bureau is on the ASCB Website, providing a resource for meeting program chairs and others seeking women to serve as speakers, as review panelists, and for searches. The Committee thanked Kane and Sandra Masur for their work on this project. In addition to the agencies and organizations previously notified about the Resource Bureau, Committee members suggested that the American Women in Science (AWIS), Gordon Conference and European Molecular Biology Organization meeting chairs and the ASCB International Affairs Committee be asked to publicize the Resource Bureau and recommend European and Far Eastern women who could be invited to participate.
Education Committee Expands Role
Solomon reported on the preliminary results of the ASCB Membership Survey undertaken by the Education Committee, which was commissioned in recognition that in order to impact education at the college and graduate level, it is necessary to know what responsibilities and skills are needed by the students being taught. Data collection and preliminary analysis of survey results have been completed. Preliminary findings will be published.
Solomon reported on the Panel organized by and for Postdoctoral Fellows during the Annual Meeting. The panel addressed the changed realities of postdoctoral careers in the 1990s and offered some suggestions on how to gain access to broader career opportunities based on a postdoctoral education. Solomon reiterated the commitment of the Education Committee to serve as a focus for postdoctoral concerns.
J. Richard McIntosh expressed ongoing interest in developing worthwhile roles for senior cell biologists away from the university. Committee members enthusiastically supported the need to explore options.
Additionally, the Committee discussed the following ongoing Education Committee projects:
Public Policy Committee Discusses Funding, Cloning
The Committee agreed to pursue the idea raised at its last meeting to solicit nominations for the Public Service Award from the ASCB membership, utilizing a Subcommittee of the Public Policy Committee to review the nominations and develop a recommendation to the Council for the award (see page 23). Berg reported that Council had discussed the possibility of presenting the Public Service Award on opening night at the 1998 Annual Meeting.
The Committee reviewed recent proposed changes to Circular A-21, Office of Management & Budget policy, which could in particular effect animal research facilities. Berg had written a letter to the OMB opposing proposed new language which would require researchers who use animals to fully bear the costs of those facilities. There was also discussion about the NIH Basic Research Support Grant program, which has been unfunded for the past several years, but if revived could be a valuable resource to scientists in need of special research equipment. The Committee reviewed and approved the SocietyÕs existing required misconduct guidelines.
Marc Kirschner and Elizabeth Marincola described recent efforts at the NIH to analyze and address possible inhibitory effects of intellectual property rights on the progress of science (see page 23). Berg reported on recent activities regarding the Office of Alternative Medicine at the NIH.
Cloning policy was discussed; Berg reminded the Committee that he had responded on behalf of the Committee to the National Bioethics Advisory CommissionÕs (NBAC) request for the SocietyÕs position on cloning support of a ban on human cloning, which the NBAC had ultimately recommended in its final report. Berg also mentioned a recent article in the New York Times reporting on the activity of infertility firms which are gearing up to clone humans. Federal legislation to ban cloning was considered in 1997, but was not passed by Congress.
J. Michael Bishop and Tom Pollard reported on recent activities of the Joint Steering Committee for Public Policy (JSC). Pollard noted that a history of the JSC had been written which described the legislative activities of the group. He introduced Donna Crane, who had been retained by the JSC to implement a district organizing pilot project in Pennsylvania. Crane indicated that the main goal of the project is to recruit scientists to work with their Members of Congress to advocate for funding for biomedical research. There are a total of 200 Pennsylvania scientists who are members of the coalition. Each has been provided with background materials on the budget, draft letters, and status information on current funding legislation.
Mike Bishop reported on the Congressional Biomedical Research Caucus. In the previous year the Caucus hosted ten luncheon briefings, and average attendance had grown to over 80. He solicited suggestions from the Committee on ideas for briefings in 1998, and indicated that Speaker Newt Gingrich will attend the briefing that he had requested on Diabetes.
Joint Steering Committee Congressional Liaisons Peter Kyros and Belle Cummins reported that the Clinton Administration is finalizing its budget for FYÕ99. There is some concern that funding for basic biomedical research could be frozen at the FY 98 level. This concern led Kyros and Cummins to arrange a meeting in early December for ASCB Public Policy Committee member Keith Yamamoto and Executive Director Elizabeth Marincola with OMB officials to make the case for increased funding for the NIH in FYÕ99. Kyros and Cummins reported that there is momentum building in Congress to double the NIH budget over five years, but such action would have to address the restriction of budget caps, which suggest the need to propose alternative forms of funding such as from the tobacco settlement. The Committee then discussed their legislative strategy for the coming year.
Publications Committee Suspends Activity
Blackburn and 1997 President Mina Bissell had earlier corresponded with Committee members, conveying the CouncilÕs request that the Committee make recommendations about its own future given its changed relationship with Molecular Biology of the Cell (which now reports directly to Council) and the Journal of Cell Biology (no longer associated with the ASCB), and in view of the resignation of Chair Marianne Bronner-Fraser.
Present at the meeting, in addition to Blackburn and Bissell, were Committee members Jean Schwarzsbauer, Susan Wente, Lorraine Pillus and Margaret Werner-Washburne. Elizabeth Marincola and Ro Kampman from the ASCB National Office, and Paul Matsudaira, Co-Editor of Methods in Cell Biology, were also present.
The Committee was reorganized under Bronner-Fraser's leadership to serve as a coordinator for publications that were being planned in other ASCB committees. It was envisioned that each member of the Publications Committee would shepherd a publication, including for example, revisions of the popular "How to" series.
Matsudaira recounted the history of the Methods in Cell Biology series, published by Academic Press, and its relationship to the Committee, indicating that he and Les Wilson, the other series Co-Editor, attended meetings of the Committee, which recommended ideas for future volumes and potential editors. He thought that the process had worked well and that the Committee had been influential in determining topics and editors.
After considerable discussion of the CommitteeÕs current status and purpose, there was consensus that in recent years the Committee has lacked sufficient long term and sustained purpose, as well as the infrastructure necessary, to conceptualize and complete the execution of publications. The consensus was that the bulk of Committee work was better suited to other committees from which ideas for publications originated.
The Committee determined therefore that the few projects still under the jurisdiction of the Publications Committee should be delegated to the authority of the Society committees from which they were generated, ensuring a greater vested interest in the projects as well as more active Committee membership.
It was furthermore agreed that the Publications Committee should be made dormant until a project of sufficient size and scope is proposed by Council or another ASCB Committee to require directed attention by the Publications Committee. At such a time, ad hoc membership could be established of persons interested in the specific project, with the chair for that ad hoc committee to be selected by the ASCB President as stipulated by the Society's Bylaws. Marincola suggested that the Publications Committee not be eliminated from the Society's Bylaws, but rather be left inactive, which would facilitate revitalization, should it be indicated in the future. To ensure continued coordination of publications among other committees, it was suggested that the ASCB staff Director of Publications should attend or otherwise work with other committees as appropriate.
Matsudaira suggested that the advisory function previously provided by the Publications Committee for the Methods series be redirected to the Education Committee.
The American Society For Cell Biology
The American Society for Cell Biology Minorities Affairs Committee (ASCB MAC) announces the ASCB/MAC Visiting Professorship Awards. The purpose of the Awards is to support research at primarily teaching institutions that serve minority students and scientists.
Each professorship provides support of $12,000 plus $700 for travel expenses. $2,000 is awarded to the host institution for supplies.
This program will provide research support for professors at minority-serving institutions to work in the laboratories of members of the American Society for Cell Biology for an eight- to ten-week period during the summer of 1998.
The goal of the program is to give science instructors in primarily teaching institutions a research experience in cell biology or a related field. This is intended to provide experience with new research tools and techniques, and to allow visitors to enhance their research programs. In addition, a major goal of the Professorship is to establish long-term associations between the visiting professors and research-intensive universities. Another component of the program is for professors to enhance their teaching based on the summer research experience. Women and minority teachers and teachers in colleges and universities with a high minority enrollment are especially encouraged to apply for this professorship.
An application form listing professional background, research interests, description of the proposed summer research project, and projected follow-up activities upon completion of the project must be submitted by the research host and visiting professor. The ASCB National Office will provide professors with the names of interested ASCB host scientists upon request.
For an application form, contact Dot Doyle at the American Society for Cell Biology: Phone: (301) 530-7153; Fax: (301) 530-7139; Rockville Pike, Bethesda, MD 20814-3992.
In conjunction with the Visiting Professorship Awards the ASCB MAC seeks ASCB members to act as hosts to these faculty members by providing laboratory space and advice in carrying out a research project. In particular, research scientists are sought who are interested in maintaining an association with the visiting scientists even after they return to their home institution.
Scientists interested in participating in this program should contact Dot Doyle at the American Society for Cell Biology: Phone: (301) 530-7153; Fax: (301) 530-7139;9650 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, MD 20814-3992.
|Training and Postdocs
1997 President Mina Bissell and 1998 President Elizabeth Blackburn indicated that they had both invested significant time in the previous months talking with post-docs and developing an understanding of the career issues faced by scientists in training and their broader implications for the Society. The important and growing role of the ASCB Education Committee in these issues was acknowledged, and there was consensus that the Council itself should designate more time to considering the challenges facing young investigators. Education Committee Chair Frank Solomon presented the preliminary results of the ASCB Membership Survey sponsored by the Education Committee. Blackburn indicated that working with the Education Committee to direct the time and attention of Society leadership and membership, as well as other Society resources, to training and career issues, is among her highest priorities as President.
Setting ASCB Policy and Improving Coordination Between the Society and Its Representatives to Other Organizations
Annual Meeting Organization Policy Revisions
Councilor Mary Beckerle reported for the Ad Hoc Subcommittee appointed in May, 1997, which was charged with considering issues of Minisymposium organization and to review abstract submission guidelines. The Subcommittee, chaired by Beckerle, also included Douglass Forbes, George Langford, Tony Mahowald, Elizabeth Marincola and Pam Silver. Their recommendations were discussed at length by Council and approved as follows:
1997 Annual Meeting
1998 Annual Meeting
Marincola reported on the membership retention effort undertaken by members of Council earlier in the year, where Councilors wrote personally to members whom they knew, asking them to renew their membership for 1997. Over one hundred members who had not responded to three successive dues renewal notices did renew their dues after receiving a letter from a member of Council.
Support of Outside Meetings
Molecular Biology of the Cell
|Gekas Receives Public Service Honor|
Congressman George W. Gekas is being honored tonight for his extraordinary commitment to and activities on behalf of basic biomedical research.
Mr. Gekas was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from the 17th district in Pennsylvania in 1982. He was born and raised in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and earned his undergraduate degree from Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, in 1952. After serving two years in the U.S. Army, he returned to Dickinson as a law student, receiving his J.D. in 1958. Prior to becoming a Member of Congress he was elected Assistant District Attorney for Dauphin County, Pennsylvania (1960-1966), a member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives (1966-1974) and served as a Pennsylvania State Senator (1976-1982). His success and popularity are attested to by his record of having been elected to an eighth term in the House on November 5, 1996, winning 72% of the vote.
Congressman Gekas is the Chairman of the Judiciary Subcommittee on Commercial and Administrative Law. He is recognized as a leading authority on anti-crime measures and is also a major proponent of bipartisan regulatory reform. He is currently seeking passage of his Regulatory Fair Warning Act, a bill that guarantees due process for the public in disputes with federal agencies. Last year Congressman Gekas was the sponsor of the Government Shutdown Prevention Act which would have prevented government shutdowns resulting from the failure of the Congress to complete annual funding measures. As the current 105th Congress came to a close this November, Mr. Gekas received national recognition for successfully proposing to the House Judiciary Committee that the majority table a bill to end affirmative action programs in the federal government. Mr. Gekas stated that he viewed the legislation as too divisive and racially polarizing. Civil rights leaders Kweisi Mfume, Jesse Jackson and Rep. John Conyers cheered the action by Mr. Gekas.
Congressman Gekas established himself as a champion of biomedical research in 1989 when, together with Representatives Sonny Callahan, Bill Richardson and Roy Rowland, he organized the Congressional Biomedical Research Caucus. Many said that it would never fly; an experienced appropriations staffer assured us that it wouldn't last for two briefings Congressman Gekas during this eighth year of the Caucus chaired its 60th briefing with ever greater attendance and interest from Congressional leadership. Of those 60, briefings Mr. Gekas has personally chaired 59.
The Caucus however is not the Congressman's only manifestation of support for medical research and development. When he learned of a crisis in the availability of common medical devices such as pacemakers, heart valves, catheters and even sutures, he acted immediately by introducing the Biomaterials Access Assurance Act (H.R. 872) to guarantee the flow of biomedical devices to the American public while protecting a patient's right to sue for defects in those devices.
This past year he introduced three very important pieces of legislation relating to funding for biomedical research. The first, House Resolution 83, expresses the sense of the House that NIH funding should double in five years, following a similar resolution passed in the Senate. There are currently some 30 co-sponsors of Mr. Gekas' bill, including Congressman John Porter, the Chair of the Labor, Health & Human Services and Education Appropriations Subcommittee, another champion of biomedical research and a former recipient of this Award. Congressman Porter has joined in strong support of H.Res. 83, urging passage by the Fall in the House.
Mr. Gekas also introduced H.R. 3030, which redirects former tax deductions from tobacco lawsuits into basic research. This bill would raise an estimated $100 billion over 25 years for biomedical research. Finally, on the same night that the House passed the 7.1% increase in the NIH budget for FY'98, Congressman Gekas introduced his most ambitious bill, H.R. 2889, establishing a Presidential-Congressional Commission to advise the Congress on a strategy for the global eradication of disease. This bold plan was inspired by the historian David McCullough, who addressed Members of the 105th Congress at the bi-partisan retreat in Congressman Gekas' home district last February, calling for a new goal for America in the next century. Congressman Gekas views biomedical research as the engine for ridding the world of the debilitating effects of disease and is devoting his energies to promoting that vision.
Tonight we commend Congressman George Gekas of Pennsylvania for his leadership of the Congressional Biomedical Research Caucus, and for his passionate belief in and untiring efforts on behalf of biomedical science.
The ASCB Public Policy Committee solicits nominations for the 5th annual ASCB Public Service Award for outstanding national leadership in support of biomedical research.
Past awardees are Senator Tom Harkin, Congressman John Porter, Marc Kirschner and Congressman George Gekas.
Any ASCB member may submit a nomination.
Send letter of nomination to: The American Society for Cell Biology Public Policy Committee
Letters of Nomination must be received by March 31.
|WWW.Cell Biology Education|
The ASCB Education Committee calls attention each month to several websites of educational interest to the cell biology community. The Committee does not endorse nor guarantee the accuracy of the information at any of the listed sites. If you wish to comment on the selections or suggest future inclusions please send a message to Robert Blystone.
These sites were checked January 5, 1998.
-- Robert Blystone for the ASCB Education Committee