Pew Scholars Honored for Outstanding Genetic Research

Pew Scholars Honored for Outstanding Genetic Research
GettyImages478183927Getty Images

Ribosomal subunit.

Pew scholars Maria Barna, Ph.D., and Carolyn McBride, Ph.D., were named winners Sept. 1 of the 2016 Rosalind Franklin Young Investigator Award. Given every three years by the Genetics Society of America, this prestigious award recognizes outstanding genetic research by women early in their independent faculty careers. Barna and McBride were honored for their diligence, creativity, and promising contributions to the field of genetics.

Barna, a 2014 Pew scholar, studies ribosomes—cellular factories that manufacture proteins—with her team at Stanford University. By exploring the differences between ribosomal function in different parts of the body (for example, in the eye and in a limb), Barna’s lab is illuminating the ways that tissues develop and what causes birth defects to occur.

McBride, a 2015 Pew scholar based at Princeton University, specializes in neuroscience. She has pioneered the use of mosquitoes as a model for understanding the ways that genes influence behavior. McBride’s team is investigating the differences between mosquitos that have a taste for humans and mosquitoes that bite other animals—which could lead to strategies for curbing the spread of mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue.

As Rosalind Franklin Award recipients, Barna and McBride continue a strong tradition of remarkable genetic research among Pew scholars. In 2013, scholars Mary Gehring of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Valerie Horsley of Yale University received the award; since the award’s inception in 2004, four of the eight winners have been Pew scholars.

Learn more about the Pew Scholars Program in the Biomedical Sciences.

The front facade of the Supreme Court of the United States in Washington, DC.

Agenda for America

A collection of resources to help federal, state, and local decision-makers set an achievable agenda for all Americans

Quick View

Data-driven policymaking is not just a tool for finding new solutions for emerging challenges, it makes government more effective and better able to serve the public interest. In the coming months, President Joe Biden and the 117th Congress will tackle a number of environmental, health, public safety, and fiscal and economic issues—nearly all of them complicated by the COVID-19 pandemic. To help solve specific, systemic problems in a nonpartisan fashion, Pew has compiled a series of briefings and recommendations based on our research, technical assistance, and advocacy work across America.


States of Innovation

Data-driven state policy innovations across America

Quick View

Data-driven policymaking is not just a tool for finding new solutions for difficult challenges. When states serve their traditional role as laboratories of innovation, they increase the American people’s confidence that the government they choose—no matter the size—can be effective, responsive, and in the public interest.