Three Chemistry/Biochemistry Faculty Members named AAAS Fellows

Three professors in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry are among the ten University of Notre Dame faculty members who have been named fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in honor of their efforts toward advancing science applications that are deemed scientifically or socially distinguished.

AAAS, founded in 1848 as a nonprofit association, is the world's largest scientific society and publisher of the prestigious journal Science.

The new Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry AAAS fellows are: Norman Dovichi, Grace-Rupley Professor of Chemistry; M. Sharon Stack, Ann F. Dunne and Elizabeth Riley Science Director of the Harper Cancer Research Institute and professor of chemistry and biochemistry; and Olaf Wiest, professor of chemistry and biochemistry.

Dovichi developed the measurement tools that allowed the human genome project to be completed. He is currently developing tools to study the proteome, which is the protein content of an organism, tissue or cell. He was cited for "distinguished contributions to analytical chemistry, particularly for pioneering applications of capillary electrophoresis toDNA sequencing, molecular separations at the yoctomole level and chemical cytometry."

Stack's current research centers on the proteinase families in two model systems: epithelial ovarian carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma of the oral cavity. She was cited for "distinguished contributions to the field of proteinase regulation, including mechanisms of post-translational regulation of pericellular proteolysis via cell-cell and cell-matrix adhesion."

Wiest's research interests include computational and physical organic chemistry, computational drug design, biophysical chemistry, enzyme mechanisms, transition metal catalyzed reactions and design of ligands for enantioselective catalysis. He was cited for "contributions to interdisciplinary studies in computational chemistry, inorganic chemistry and drug design."

The tradition of AAAS fellows began in 1874, and this year the association is honoring 702 individuals as fellows. Currently, members can be considered for the rank of fellow if nominated by the steering group of the association's 24 sections, by three fellows, or by the association’s chief executive officer. Each steering group then reviews the nominations of individuals within its respective section and forwards a final list to the AAAS Council.

The AAAS Council votes on the final aggregate list. The Council is the policymaking body of the association, chaired by the president, and consisting of the members of the board of directors, the retiring section chairs, delegates from each electorate and each regional division, and two delegates from the National Academies of Science.

The 10 new Notre Dame fellows will be presented with an official certificate and gold and blue (representing science and engineering, respectively) rosette pins February 16 during the 2013 AAAS annual meeting in Boston.