University of Michigan Professor will receive award at ASHG’s 2013 annual meeting
The American Society of Human Genetics (ASHG) has named John V. Moran, Ph.D., professor of Human Genetics and professor of Internal Medicine in the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan, as the 2013 recipient of the Curt Stern Award.
This annual award, named in honor of the late pioneering geneticist Curt Stern, Ph.D., recognizes researchers who have made significant scientific contributions during the past decade. ASHG will present the award, which will include a crystal plaque and cash prize, on Saturday, Oct. 26, during the organization’s 63rd annual meeting in Boston.
Dr. Moran, a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, has been a leader in research on genome instability and the biology of DNA sequences that can change their position in the genome, creating or reversing mutations and altering the genome’s size. Among his accomplishments is the discovery that processed pseudogenes are formed in the genome by the reverse transcriptase enzyme for the mobile DNA element referred to as L1. He developed the cell culture assay used in this research.
His finding that the L1 insertion can lead to deletions in the genome has been confirmed by human genome analysis as well as numerous other studies, demonstrating the importance of retrotransposition in shaping the human genome through evolutionary time, and showing that these L1 insertions occur much more frequently than previously thought.
The Curt Stern Award also recognizes Dr. Moran’s mentorship of graduate students and postdoctoral researchers as well ask his stalwart support of and service to ASHG.