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Salk professor Joanne Chory elected to Royal Society

Joanne Chory

Nobel Laureate Paul Nurse (president of the Royal Society) congratulates Joanne Chory on her election.


SalK scientist Joanne Chory has been named a Foreign Member of the Royal Society (UK), the world's oldest scientific academy in continuous existence. An expert on how plants regulate their growth, she is being recognized as a "beacon of scientific excellence and relentless ambassador for plant research in the interna- tional community."

Chory, a professor in the Institute's Plant Molecular and Cellular Biology Laboratory and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, pioneered the analysis of plant responses to their environment using a molecular genetic approach in the reference plant Arabidopsis thaliana, a member of the mustard family that is easy to grow, prolific and has the smallest genome of any flowering plant. Her laboratory has led the plant field for 20 years, making major discoveries in how plants grow and develop.

"Nobody is more deserving of this honor than Joanne," says Salk president William R. Brody. "Her research may eventually enable researchers to develop plants that are particularly well-adapted to challenging environments, boosting the yields of agricultural crops, a critical issue considering the millions of people worldwide suffering from hunger and malnutrition."

The Royal Society, founded in 1660, is a fellowship of the world's most eminent scientists, who are elected for life on the basis of scientific excellence and who have included Isaac Newton, Charles Darwin, Albert Einstein, Francis Crick, James Watson and Stephen Hawking. With the election of Joanne Chory and Salk non-resident fellow Carla Shatz (see accompanying story), the Salk Institute's roster of Royal Society members includes Crick, Leslie Orgel, Renato Dulbecco, Sydney Brenner, Tony Hunter, and non-resident fellows Elizabeth H. Blackburn, Thomas M. Jessell and David Baltimore.