News Release

Biophysical Society names 2018 award recipients

Grant and Award Announcement

Biophysical Society

The Biophysical Society is pleased to announce the recipients of its 2018 Society awards. These awards are very competitive in nature and are intended to recognize Society members for excellence in biophysics. The 2018 winners will be honored at the Society's 62nd Annual Meeting at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, California, February 17 - 21, 2018. The recipient and the reason that individual is being recognized is listed below for each award.

Jue Chen, Rockefeller University, will receive the Anatrace Membrane Protein Award for her contributions to the understanding of the molecular mechanisms of multidrug transporters, especially the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator, and her advancements in finding more effective therapies for human diseases. Funded by Anatrace Inc., this award recognizes an outstanding investigator who has made a significant contribution to the field of membrane protein research.

Wonhwa Cho, University of Illinois, Chicago, will receive the Avanti Award in Lipids for his pioneering work in the study of lipid binding domains, his innovative development of lipid-specific fluorescent sensors for real-time imaging in cells, and his contributions to understanding the role of cholesterol in lipid remodeling. Avanti Polar Lipids, Inc., established this award to recognize an investigator for outstanding contributions to our understanding of lipid biophysics.

Bianxiao Cui, Stanford University, will receive the Michael and Kate Bárány Award for her innovative combination of microfluidics, optogenetics, mechanical, and electrical perturbations to interrogate the movements of single proteins and membranes in neurons. The award is intended to recognize an outstanding contribution to biophysics by a person who has not achieved the rank of full professor at the time of nomination.

Taekjip Ha, Johns Hopkins University, will receive the Kazuhiko Kinosita Award in Single Molecule Biophysics for his leadership in the development of single-molecule techniques and their application to nucleic acid processing enzymes and particularly for his efforts to elevate an appreciation of single molecule studies among scientists in general. The award recognizes outstanding researchers for their exceptional contributions in advancing the field of single molecule biophysics.

Leslie Loew, University of Connecticut Health Center, will receive the Distinguished Service Award for his commitment to the Biophysical Society and his untiring service as the Editor-in-Chief of Biophysical Journal, demonstrating sustained dedication to maintaining the Journal's mission, high standards, and scientific integrity. This award, established by the Biophysical Society, honors service in the field of biophysics and contributions beyond achievements in research.

Carrie Partch, University of California, Santa Cruz, will receive the Margaret Oakley Dayhoff Award for her ground-breaking combination of biophysics and cell biology that is defining how protein conformational changes control circadian clock timing. This award honors the memory of Margaret Dayhoff, former President of the Biophysical Society, and is given to a woman who holds very high promise or has achieved prominence while developing the early stages of a career in biophysical research within the purview and interest of the Biophysical Society.

Madeline Shea, University of Iowa, will receive the Emily M. Gray Award for her outstanding contributions to Biophysics education at all educational levels in local, regional, and national communities. The Emily M. Gray Award is given for significant contributions to education in biophysics.

James Spudich, Stanford University, will receive the Founders Award for his ground-breaking techniques measuring forces and structural changes in single ribosomes, DNA polymerases, cell cytoplasm, red blood cells, actin filaments, and T-cell receptor. Established by the Society, this award is given to scientists for outstanding achievement in any area of biophysics. These achievements are often reflected in the acceptance of and use by others in the field, either promptly or over a period of years.


The Biophysical Society, founded in 1958, is a professional, scientific Society established to encourage development and dissemination of knowledge in biophysics. The Society promotes growth in this expanding field through its annual meeting, monthly journal, and committee and outreach activities. Its 9000 members are located throughout the U.S. and the world, where they teach and conduct research in colleges, universities, laboratories, government agencies, and industry. For more information on these awards, the Society, or the 2018 Annual Meeting, visit

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