UCSF Chancellor to Receive Top Honor at White House Ceremony on March 14

March 11, 2005
News Office: Corinna Kaarlela (415) 502-6397

UCSF Chancellor J. Michael Bishop is one of three Bay Area scientists who will receive the 2003 National Medal of Science in a ceremony at the White House on Monday, March 14, beginning at 10:20 AM (ET).

The medal is the nation's highest honor for researchers in the fields of science and engineering. A total of eight medals will be awarded on Monday.

In addition to UCSF Chancellor Bishop, the Bay Area recipients are John M. Prausnitz, professor of chemical engineering at UC-Berkeley, and Charles Yanofsky, the Morris Herzstein professor of biology at Stanford University.

* SATELLITE FEED: There will be a two-camera live satellite feed of the ceremony. There is no charge for the feed. The coordinates are Ku Band: AMC 9, Transponder 14 & C Band: AMC 3-Transponder 14. There will be a signal test from 9:30 AM-10:20 AM (ET). At that time, no earlier, a slate will appear with a troubleshoot number.

* WEBCAST: A webcast is scheduled from the White House pool camera. Go to www.whitehouse.gov. The National Medals Foundation will also carry the same webcast, and its link is www.nationalmedals.org. Links to the webcast from these sites may not appear until right before the ceremony.

* PHOTOS: Within hours after the ceremony, digital photos of laureates receiving their medal from the President will be on the National Medals website at www.nationalmedals.org.

* J. MICHAEL BISHOP, UCSF Chancellor and University professor -- Bishop has been a leading contributor to cancer research for the past 30 years. He shared the Nobel Prize in 1989 with Harold E. Varmus for demonstrating that normal cells contain genes capable of becoming cancer-causing genes, a revolutionary finding that inaugurated a new era of research on the genetic origins of cancer. Bishop's subsequent analysis of genetic changes in human cancers also influenced scientists worldwide.

* JOHN M. PRAUSNITZ, professor of chemical engineering at the UC-Berkeley -- He is honored for a career reputation as one of the main architects of chemical manufacturing processes in the United States. His work led chemical manufacturing out of Edisonian trial-and-error practices into powerful, quantitative prediction methods. His work combined results from physics and chemistry with the new power of computers and led to drastic changes in chemical process design.

* CHARLES YANOFSKY, the Morris Herzstein professor of biology at Stanford University -- He is honored for discovering an essential element in the genetic code -- the linear relationship between the structures of genes and their protein products -- the one gene-one protein relationship. This was an important foundation to his subsequent experiments on the regulation of gene expression.

The National Medal of Science was established in 1959 as a presidential award to be given to individuals for their outstanding contributions to knowledge in the physical, biological, mathematical or engineering sciences. In 1980, Congress expanded this recognition to include the social and behavioral sciences. The president appoints a committee of 12 scientists and engineers to evaluate the nominees for the award. The medal, including the 2003 honorees, has been awarded to 417 distinguished scientists and engineers whose careers span decades of research and development, as well as support and outreach to students and society.

For additional information about all eight recipients and the ceremony, go to

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