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.

Spotlight on Mental Health

Composite image of modern city network communication concept

Learn the Basics of Broadband from Our Limited Series

Sign up for our four-week email course on Broadband Basics

Quick View

How does broadband internet reach our homes, phones, and tablets? What kind of infrastructure connects us all together? What are the major barriers to broadband access for American communities?

Pills illustration
Pills illustration

What Is Antibiotic Resistance—and How Can We Fight It?

Sign up for our four-week email series The Race Against Resistance.

Quick View

Antibiotic-resistant bacteria, also known as “superbugs,” are a major threat to modern medicine. But how does resistance work, and what can we do to slow the spread? Read personal stories, expert accounts, and more for the answers to those questions in our four-week email series: Slowing Superbugs.

Explore Pew’s new and improved
Fiscal 50 interactive

Your state's stats are more accessible than ever with our new and improved Fiscal 50 interactive:

  • Maps, trends, and customizable charts
  • 50-state rankings
  • Analysis of what it all means
  • Shareable graphics and downloadable data
  • Proven fiscal policy strategies


Welcome to the new Fiscal 50

Key changes include:

  • State pages that help you keep track of trends in your home state and provide national and regional context.
  • Interactive indicator pages with highly customizable and shareable data visualizations.
  • A Budget Threads feature that offers Pew’s read on the latest state fiscal news.

Learn more about the new and improved Fiscal 50.