Tuesday, May 29, 2007

2007 L'Oreal USA Fellowships

As reported in Genetic Engineering & Technology News, the 2007 recipients of the L'Oreal USA Fellowships For Women in Science have been announced. The winners all received their Ph.D.s within the last couple of years. Here are the winners, with research descriptions from the press release (I've added information about their current position if I could find it):

-- Dr. Jaime D. Barnes University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico - earth scientist and geochemist, analyzing chlorine isotope ratios of rocks, minerals and volcanic gas to determine the source of chlorine emitted from active volcanoes. Dr. Barnes is identifying sources of chlorine in two very different subduction zones, and has recognized important isotopic fractionation processes between hydrochloric acid solutions and vapor, which have implications for the fundamental dissociation of hydrochlorine in aqueous solutions. Her work may hold the key to how volcanic eruptions occur and thus help scientists to predict future eruptions.

Barnes is currently a postdoc in the lab of Zachary Sharp.

-- Dr. Sarah Clinton - Molecular and Behavioral Neuroscience Research Institute, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan - neuroscientist, studying the roles that nature and nurture play in shaping emotionality and emotionally-driven behaviors in rats. She is breeding two types of rats with differences in emotional behavior and comparing the impact of mothering-styles on their offspring's behavior and neural stress-circuitry. When complete, this body of work should yield a greater understanding of how genetic and environmental factors interact to shape inborn differences in emotionality which may, in turn, put certain individuals at risk for developing stress-induced psychiatric disorders.

It looks like she is currently working in the lab of Huda Akil.

-- Dr. Julie Huber - Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole, Massachusetts -oceanographer, researching the microbial ecology of deep-sea hydrothermal vents. Dr. Huber is using large insert DNA libraries to understand the metabolic capacity, genomic context and phylogenetic relationships of subseafloor communities. Her project applies a combined molecular diversity, metagenomic, and geochemical approach to provide a window into the microbial world. Dr. Huber's work will help researchers better understand how microbial populations function in and regulate the world's oceans.

Huber is currently a Research Associate at MBL. Her research is associated with NASA's Astrobiology Institute.

-- Dr. Maria Krisch - University of California, Irvine, Irvine, California - physical chemist, researching fundamental properties of the surfaces of liquid solutions. Dr. Krisch's area of focus is understanding liquid-vapor interfaces at the molecular level, which has been examined extensively with water-based solutions but not non-aqueous solutions. Her research focuses on liquid solutions of electrolytes, which are important in studying atmospheric chemistry. Her findings will have several practical applications, including bringing a much needed quantitative and physical picture to the role that aerosol particles play in pollution and climate change.

Krisch is a postdoc in John Hemminger's research group at Irvine.

-- Dr. Kim Woodrow - Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut - biomedical engineer, developing new drug delivery strategies and diagnostic tools for the monitoring and treatment of infectious diseases and cancer. Dr. Woodrow's research is doing this by using various bioactive peptides to engineer multifunctional nanoparticles. In particular, she is interested in designing biodegradable nanoparticles that will be efficiently delivered intracellularly once at a target site. This combination of molecular biology strategy and nanotechnology will likely translate into new technology for imaging and treating diseases.

Woodrow is a postdoc in the Yale biomedical engineering department, probably in the lab of W. Mark Saltzman.
Astronaut and physicist Sally Ride was presented the Women in Science Role Model Award "for her role in helping to shape the image of women in science." Ride currently is CEO of Sally Ride Science, which runs programs to encourage girls in science and technology.
A key part of our corporate mission is to make a difference in girls' lives, and in society's perceptions of their roles in technical fields. Our publications and out-of-school programs bring science to life and show kids that science is creative, collaborative, fascinating and fun.
The non-USA divisions of L'Oreal also award women science fellowships. For example, The Star online recently reported on the L’Oreal Malaysia For Women in Science Fellowships. The fellowships are for Malaysian female PhDs under the age of 35 working in materials science-related fields. Last year the winners were "Munirah Sha’ban, 26, for researching tissue engineering and regenerative medicine at Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM), Crystale Lim Siew Ying, 24 for researching molecular genetics at Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) and Dr Latifah Saiful Yazan, 35, researching a plant extract as a potential cancer-curing agent at UPM."

Also, in conjunction with UNESCO, L'Oreal awards fellowships to women scientists all over the world. The 2007 UNESCO-L'OREAL International Fellows are:
Mestawet Taye Asfaw, food science, Ethiopia
Khady Nani Drame, plant biotechnology, Senegal
Christine Ouinsavi, forest biology, Benin

Fatima Abbas, plant molecular biology, Sudan
Sarrah Ben M'Barek, plant biotechnology, Tunisia
Rhimou Bouhlal, marine biology, Morocco

Fenny Dwivany, molecular biology, Indonesia
Barno Sultanova, biotechnology, Uzbekistan
Chawanee Thongpanchang, medicinal chemistry, Thailand

Irene Chiolo, biomedicine, Italy
Gisella Cruz Garcia, conservation biology, Netherlands
Petra Klepac, epidemiology, Croatia

Venetia Briggs, behavioral ecology, Belize
Nancy Chandia, organic chemistry, Chile
Laura Echarte, crop physiology, Argentina
The application deadline for the 2008 awards is September 14, 2007.

As an aside: the L'Oreal web site is all in (mostly superfluous) flash. It makes Firefox run very s-l-o-w-l-y and they even have a multistep flash interface for subscribing to their RSS feed. Very annoying!
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Rachael said...

How funny: I was searching for information on this award and your blog popped up. I work with Kim Woodrow, and yes, she is a post doc in the Saltzman lab. I am glad to see a blog about women in science - keep up the good work...

Peggy K said...

Thanks for the confirmation. Some of the information I've found online is really outdated.