The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research today announced that New York University (NYU) immunology researcher Dan R. Littman, MD, PhD, will be the recipient of the first annual Ross Prize in Molecular Medicine, issued via the Feinstein Institute’s peer-reviewed, open-access journal, Molecular Medicine.
Dr. Littman is the Helen L. and Martin S. Kimmel Professor of Molecular Immunology in the Skirball Institute of Biomolecular Medicine at NYU School of Medicine. He is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, and a member of both the National Academy of Sciences and the Institute of Medicine.
The Ross award, which includes a $50,000 prize, will be formally presented to Dr. Littman on June 24 at the New York Academy of Science in Manhattan, followed by an academic lecture by Dr. Littman and several other preeminent researchers.
The Ross Prize is awarded annually by Molecular Medicine to mid-career scientists who have made a demonstrable impact in the understanding of human diseases pathogenesis and/or treatment, and who hold significant promise for making even greater contributions to the general field of molecular medicine.
“A renowned immunologist, Dr. Littman has made seminal contributions in a number of scientific fields that advance our understanding of the immune system, HIV infections and autoimmune disease,” said Feinstein Institute President Kevin J. Tracey, MD, who also serves as editor-in-chief of Molecular Medicine. “Dr. Littman and his colleagues discovered that HIV enters the body through what he terms a ‘Trojan horse,’ a specific type of immune cell, called an immature dendritic cell, which it then hijacks to attack other key cells of the immune system. Dr. Littman and his team have more recently discovered a means to control inappropriate autoimmune responses to bacteria that live naturally in the human digestive system.”
Dr. Littman was selected by an awards committee comprised of:
Christopher J. Czura, PhD, vice president, scientific affairs, and executive editor, Molecular Medicine, Feinstein Institute for Medical Research;
Betty Diamond, MD, head, Center for Autoimmune Diseases and Musculoskeletal Disorders, Feinstein Institute;
Peter K. Gregersen, MD, head, Laboratory of Genomics and Human Genetics, Feinstein Institute;
Göran K. Hansson, MD PhD, professor of experimental cardiovascular research, Karolinska Institute, Sweden;
Klas Kärre, MD PhD, professor of molecular immunology, Karolinska Institute; and Kevin J. Tracey, MD, President, Feinstein Institute.
The Ross Award was made possible by the generosity of Feinstein Institute board members Robin and Jack Ross of Upper Brookville, NY.
About Molecular Medicine
Molecular Medicine is an open access, international, peer-reviewed biomedical journal published by The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research. Molecular Medicine strives to understand normal body functioning and disease pathogenesis at the molecular level, which may allow researchers and physician-scientists to use that knowledge in the design of specific molecular tools for disease diagnosis, treatment, prognosis, and prevention. To learn more, go to: www.molmed.org