IOS Scientists are named MacArthur Fellows!

The MacArthur Foundation recently awarded  26 talented individuals with a prestigious MacArthur Fellowship, also called the MacArthur “Genius” award. Ranging from artists to scientists, these Fellows were selected as exceptionally creative and dedicated individuals who will contribute to society in long-lasting ways through their discoveries and creative activities. As explained by John Palfrey, President of the MacArthur Foundation:

MacArthur Fellows demonstrate the power of individual creativity to reframe old problems, spur reflection, create new knowledge, and better the world for everyone. They give us reason for hope, and they inspire us all to follow our own creative instincts.”

IOS would like to recognize three BIO-funded scientists who are among the new cohort of Fellows:

Stacy Jupiter, a Marine Scientist with the Wildlife Conservation Society, and co-funded between the Division of Environmental Biology (DEB) and the Directorate of Geological Sciences, is studying how traditional ecological knowledge is used to manage endangered coral ecosystems in the Pacific Islands around Melanesia. She works with local communities to ensure conservation efforts in the region are consistent with local culture and have equitable outcomes for all.

DEB – 1427453, Coastal SEES Collaborative Research: Understanding Coupled Biological and Cultural Resilience across Coastal Pacific Island Systems

Zachary Lippman, a Plant Biologist from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, funded by IOS, studies how the basic underpinnings  of genetic networks guide the development of fruits. He has used this knowledge to manipulate crop developmental pathways. His approach sidesteps the laborious process of selective breeding and leads to more resilient and higher-yielding crops in tomato and species such as ground cherry. In addition to awards from the Division of Biological Infrastructure, current awards with Zachary Lippman as Principal Investigator include:

IOS-1556172, A Novel Mechanism Regulating Inflorescence Development in Tomato

IOS-1732253, Research PGR: Structural variant landscapes in tomato genomes and their role in natural variation, domestication and crop improvement

Jenny Tung, an Evolutionary Anthropologist and Geneticist from Duke University has received funding from DEB, IOS and the Biological Anthropology program in the Directorate of Social and Behavioral Economics. She studies how society and genomes together influence animal health and survival, using Kenyan baboons and meerkats as models. The work has relevance to improving human health by advancing the field of evolutionary medicine.

IOS – 1749419 RAPID: Physiological and molecular mechanisms that explain reproductive-female-specific skeletal growth in a highly cooperative mammal, the Damaraland mole rat