Li and Mitchell Receive DeLill Nasser Award from the Genetics Society of America

May 10, 2011

Wenjun Li, a postdoctoral fellow, and ,Katrina Mitchell a graduate student, in the Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology at Duke University Medical Center, have received the DeLill Nasser Award from the Genetics Society of America. The Genetics Society of America established the DeLill Nasser Award for Professional Development in Genetics in 2001 to support travel costs for graduate students and postdoctoral trainees to attend national and international meetings and enroll in laboratory courses.

Li works in the laboratory of Joseph Heitman, MD, PhD, James B. Duke Professor and Chair of the Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology. He joined the Heitman lab in 2008 to study the population genetics of C. neoformans and C. gatti as well as characterize the mating type (MAT) locus in some fungal genomes.

Mitchell works in the laboratory of Sue Jinks-Robertson, Professor in the Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology. She joined the Jinks-Robertson lab in 2008 and is using a transformation based gap-repair assay to examine the mechanisms of mitotic recombination.

The award is named for long-time GSA member and National Science Foundation Program Director in Eukaryotic Genetics, DeLill Nasser. Nasser, who died in 2000, was at NSF for more than 22 years and was considered the “patron saint” of genetics and friend of many geneticists. She was primarily interested “in the science” and because of this interest championed the funding of the genomic sequencing of Arabidopsis and research in Drosophila. Nasser was especially supportive of young scientists, particularly, those who were beginning their careers and those who were pursuing new areas of genetic inquiry.
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For additional information about the DeLill Nasser Award, please visit the Genetics Society of America web site.