The Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives

Announcements, Honors, Awards


Mahlon DeLong wins Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award

Mahlon R. DeLong, M.D., and EDAB member Alim Louis Benabid were awarded the Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award for developing novel techniques of deep brain stimulation of the subthalmic nucleus by surgically implanting a "brain pacemaker" that can reduce tremors and restore motor function in patients with advanced Parkinson's disease.

Robert Daroff wins Lifetime Achievement Award

Robert B. Daroff, M.D., received The Lifetime Achievement Award from The National Headache Foundation in May. The award is presented to a health care professional for an impressive body of work in the field of headache and for enriching countless lives of those who experience headache. 

Diane Griffin wins 2015 Excellence in Science Award

Diane E. Griffin, M.D., Ph.D., was awarded the 2015 Excellence in Science Award from the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) for her achievements studying human viral diseases, including her "seminal studies of a nerve cell's recovery from viral infections of the brain."

 Thomas Jessell awarded Gruber Prize

Thomas M. Jessell, Ph.D., was awarded the 2014 Gruber Neuroscience Prize for his pioneering work in the study of spinal neural circuits and identifying the "cellular, molecular, and genetic mechanisms" that regulate those circuits, findings that helped establish the entire field of developmental neuroscience.

 Marcus Raichle and Brenda Milner win Kavli Prize

Marcus E. Raichle, M.D. and Brenda A. Milner, Sc. D., were conferred the 2014 Kavli Prize by the Norwegian Academy of Science. Milner has discovered specific areas of the brain pertinent for memory formation and other functions most famously, by studying her beloved patient HM. Raichle has made strides in visualizing and measuring the functioning of the human brain as well as mapping neuronal networks.

Jeffrey Noebels  Awarded Michael E. DeBakey Excellence in Research Award

Jeffrey L. Noebels, M.D., Ph.D. was conferred the Michael E. DeBakey Excellence in Research Award,  Baylor College of Medicine's top honor.


 In Memoriam:  Gerald M. Edelman, M.D., Ph.D.

We are saddened by the loss of Gerald M. Edelman, M.D., Ph.D., who died at home in  La Jolla, California on May 17, 2014.  Dr. Edelman won the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine in 1972 with Rodney R. Porter for their discoveries concerning the chemical structure of antibodies."  He was a founding member of DABI and a founding Director of the Neurosciences Institute, a non-profit scientific research organization dedicated to learning about the human brain for the benefit of humankind.

John Hildebrand Elected Foreign Secretary of National Academy of Sciences

John G. Hildebrand, Ph.D., University of Arizona has been elected to be the next Foreign Secretary of the National Academy of Sciences. He will be responsible for the international activities of the Academy during his four-year term beginning July 1, 2014. Diane Griffin, M.D., Ph.D., Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health serves as NAS Vice President.

 12 New Members Join the Dana Alliance

Steven W. Barger, Ph.D., University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
Ronald L. Davis, Ph.D., The Scripps Research Institute-Florida
Emanuel M. DiCicco-Bloom, M.D., Robert Wood Johnson Medical School Rutgers
Sharona E. Gordon, Ph.D., University of Washington
Patrick R. Hof, M.D., Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Dennis L. Molfese, Ph.D., University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Robert Sapolsky, Ph.D., Stanford University
S. Murray Sherman, B.S., Ph.D., M.A., University of Chicago
James W. Simpkins, Ph.D., West Virginia University Health Science Center
Elizabeth S. Spelke, Ph.D., Harvard University
Arthur Wingfield, D.Phil., Brandeis University
Tom C.T. Yin, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison

 Marcus Raichle wins Perl-UNC Neuroscience Prize

Marcus E. Raichle, M.D., Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, was awarded the Perl-UNC Neuroscience Prize for his remarkable findings about he persistent brain activity of our at-rest minds. The $10,000 cash prize is becoming increasingly well-known among biomedical scientists.

Elizabeth S. Spelke Wins First National Academy of Sciences (NAS) Prize
in Psychological and Cognitive Sciences

Elizabeth S. Spelke, Ph.D., Harvard University, was awarded the inaugural  NAS Prize in Psychological and Cognitive Sciences for her pioneering work focusing on infants and children to reveal how the young brain represents concepts such as numbers and spatial relationships. Dr. Spelke will receive a $200,000 prize.   

Thomas M. Jessell Wins 2014 Vilcek Prize

 Thomas M. Jessel, Ph.D., Columbia University, was awarded the 2014 Vilcek Prize for Biomedical Science honoring foreign-born biomedical scientists and artists who have made outstanding contributions to society in the United States. From a clinical perspective, Jessel's findings have paved the way for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, notably spinal muscular atrophy and Lou Gehrig's disease.

Thomas C. Südhof Wins Nobel Prize

Thomas C. Südhof, M.D.,was conferred the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (sharing the award with James Rothman, Ph.D., and Robert Schekman, Ph.D.) for his discovery of the nature of synaptic connections and transmissions and the chemical reactions and proteins involved. Dr. Südhof is the Avram Goldstein Professor at Stanford University School of Medicine and Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

New Members Elected to Dana Alliance
Executive Committee

Steven E. Hyman, M.D., Director of the Broad Institute’s Stanley Center for Psychiatric Research has been elected to the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives Executive Committee.

Story C. Landis, Ph.D., Director of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, NIH has been elected to the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives Executive Committee. 

In Memoriam: David H. Hubel, M.D.  

We are saddened by the loss of David H. Hubel, M.D., who died from kidney failure on September 22, 2013.  Dr. Hubel won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his novel discoveries of how the visual cortex processes information and visual perception, sharing it with Torsten N. Wiesel and Roger Sperry.  He was the John Enders University Professor of Neurobiology, Emeritus at Harvard Medical School.


Elected to National Academy of Sciences

Joseph E. LeDoux, Ph.D., and Daniel L. Schacter, Ph.D., were elected to the National Academy of Sciences.

Five Members of the Dana Alliance Elected to the Institute of Medicine 

Mary Bartlett Bunge, Ph.D., The  Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami
Joseph G. Gleeson, M.D., Investigator, HHMI, University of California, San Diego
Pat R. Levitt, Ph.D., Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California and Children's Hospital Los Angeles
Eve Marder, Ph.D., Brandeis University
Christopher A. Walsh, M.D., Ph.D., Investigator, HHMI, Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School