June 3, 1999
UPTON, NY - Carl Anderson, a senior geneticist at the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory, has been named chairman of the Laboratory's Biology Department, effective June 1. He succeeds F. William Studier, who will return to research within the department.
With a staff of 93, the Biology Department conducts basic research in molecular genetics, structural biology, genomics and biotechnology. Currently, Brookhaven's biologists are focused on engineering plant genes to make new enzyme catalysts, developing DNA sequencing methods for the human and other genomes, determining complex protein structures, and understanding the mechanisms that repair DNA. These basic research programs are important for creating new pharmaceuticals, producing alternative industrial feedstocks, reducing carbon emissions, and designing bacteria that may clean up soils contaminated with heavy metals or radioactive materials.
The Biology Department also operates beam lines at two large scientific facilities at Brookhaven that are used by scientists from throughout the world for a variety of research: the National Synchrotron Light Source and the High Flux Beam Reactor. In addition, the department is home to the Scanning Transmission Microscope, a high-resolution microscope, which also attracts an international group of scientists to Brookhaven.
As chairman, Dr. Anderson will work to align the Biology Department's research programs closely with the goals of its primary funding source, the U.S. Department of Energy. He added that he also would like the department to work in close collaboration with other Brookhaven departments, such as the Medical Department and Department of Applied Science, where expertise in various scientific areas can be pooled to solve problems, for example, in neuroimaging, cancer research and environmental research. Further, Dr. Anderson wishes to renew the vitality of the Biology Department by attracting bright, young scientists to its research programs.
A recent initiative within the department is the proteome project,
a large-scale effort that involves several national laboratories,
universities and industrial organizations. The proteome is the
of all proteins specified by the genome of an organism. The focus of the Biology Department's pilot project is yeast proteins with unique structures, and a goal of the program is developing methods for the rapid determination of protein structures. Dr. Anderson said he hoped the proteome project would be an expanding area of research in the department.
Nanoscience, the study of extremely small structures, may be another area for future research within the department. Such studies may lead to technological advances, such as new medical sensors or more efficient computer chips.
Carl Anderson earned a B.A. in chemistry and physics from Harvard
University in 1966, and a Ph.D. in microbiology from Washington
University in 1970. He was a postdoctoral fellow and then a staff
scientist at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory before joining Brookhaven
Lab's Biology Department in 1975 as an assistant geneticist.
He also has been an adjunct professor in the Department of Microbiology
in the State University of New York at Stony Brook since 1976
and was promoted to adjunct professor in 1990. Dr. Anderson's
research has centered on the molecular biology of human
adenoviruses and, more recently, on the molecular signaling mechanisms that detect DNA damage in human cells.
The U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory creates and operates major facilities available to university, industrial and government personnel for basic and applied research in the physical, biomedical and environmental sciences, and in selected energy technologies. The Laboratory is operated by Brookhaven Science Associates, a not-for-profit research management company, under contract with the U.S. Department of Energy.
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NOTE TO LOCAL EDITORS: Carl Anderson is a resident of Stony Brook, New York.