Professors Neal Copeland and Nancy Jenkins have both recently been elected to the United States National Academy of Sciences for their continuing contribution and dedication to the furthering of scientific knowledge in the field of Genetics. Collaborating for the past 30 years, Neal and Nancy have investigated various types of human disease in the mouse model and are among the 50 most-cited biomedical research scientists in the world, with more than 750 co-authored papers to their credit. Hailed as the founders of modern mouse genetics, this internationally renowned duo now predominantly focus on modelling human cancer in mice.
“We are both thrilled and pleased with the honour. It is undoubtedly one of the highest honours a US scientist can receive,” says Neal. Following conversations with Prof. Irv Weissman from Stanford University, Neal quotes, “Only one in 10 000 scientists in the life sciences field are elected by the Academy, so for both of us to have been elected is truly fantastic.” “We’ll go together to the National Academy headquarters in downtown Washington DC to sign our names in the book,” says Nancy – further confirmation of their remarkable partnership.
Each year, the National Academy of Sciences elects 72 scientists and engineers across all the sciences who have substantially contributed to their field. New members are elected by a panel of their peers in recognition of their distinguished and on-going achievements. Established in 1863 by former President Abraham Lincoln, the National Academy of Sciences is a private organisation, with 2150 active members and 404 foreign associates (non-voting members with citizenship outside the United States); nearly 200 of these are Nobel Prize recipients. The NAS is now one of four academies – together referred to as the National Academies – from which political leaders often seek independent advice for policy decisions that touch on scientific, technological or medical issues, such as global warming, stem cells and cloning.