News Releases

Cell biologist Daniel Gottschling elected to American Academy of Arts & Sciences 2010 class of fellows

SEATTLE — April 21, 2010 — Cell biologist Daniel Gottschling, Ph.D., a member of the Basic Sciences Division at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, has been elected to membership in the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, one of the nation's oldest and most prestigious honorary societies and independent policy-research centers.

Gottschling studies yeast cells for clues to the molecular underpinnings of life – clues that he hopes will have parallels in humans. He uses this model organism to understand the relationship between cancer and aging – a problem that has long vexed biologists.

He was inspired to study the connection between aging and cancer after learning some startling statistics: A person's risk of developing cancer starts to increase exponentially around age 40. By age 55, men have a 50 percent chance and women have a 33 percent chance of acquiring some form of the disease. Gottschling and colleagues study yeast to determine whether a fundamental process exists in all cells as they get older that might explain the increased incidence of cancer.

He is among 229 leaders in the sciences, social sciences, humanities, arts, business and public affairs who have been elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences 2010 class of fellows. This year’s class includes winners of the Nobel, Pulitzer and Shaw prizes, MacArthur and Guggenheim fellows and Grammy, Tony and Oscar award winners.

The latest honorees include actors John Lithgow and Denzel Washington, director Francis Ford Coppola and jazz saxophonist Sonny Rollins.
The new class will be inducted at a ceremony Oct. 9 at the Academy’s headquarters in Cambridge, Mass.

Other Academy members at the Hutchinson Center are Lee Hartwell, Ph.D., president and director of the Center who in 2001 received the Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine for his work in yeast genetics; Linda B. Buck, Ph.D., who in 2004 received the Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine for her groundbreaking work on the network responsible for our sense of smell; Mark T. Groudine, M.D., Ph.D., deputy director of the Hutchinson Center and former director of its Basic Sciences Division; Robert Eisenman, Ph.D., a leader in the field of oncogenes, aberrantly regulated genes that cause cancer; and the late Harold M. Weintraub, Ph.D., an international leader in the field of molecular biology.

Founded in 1780 by John Adams, James Bowdoin, John Hancock and other scholar-patriots, the Academy elects the finest minds and most influential leaders from each generation, including George Washington, Ben Franklin, Daniel Webster, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Albert Einstein and Winston Churchill. The current membership includes more than 250 Nobel laureates and more than 60 Pulitzer Prize winners.

Note for media only: A photo of Gottschling is available here.

MEDIA CONTACT:
Kristen Woodward
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
(206) 667-5095
kwoodwar@fhcrc.org

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Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
At Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, our interdisciplinary teams of world-renowned scientists and humanitarians work together to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer, HIV/AIDS and other diseases. Our researchers, including three Nobel laureates, bring a relentless pursuit and passion for health, knowledge and hope to their work and to the world. For more information, please visit www.fhcrc.org.