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MEDIA CONTACT: Jonathan Sherwood (585) 273-4726
February 19, 2003
Chemist Wins $200,000 Award for Promising Research
Todd Krauss, assistant professor of chemistry, has been named a recipient
of a $200,000 James D. Watson Investigator Award, which honors New York State
biotechnology researchers who show great promise early in their careers. Krauss
joined the University of Rochester in 2000 after gaining his doctorate from Cornell
University in 1998.
"Todd deserves this award because he's a great scientist and his achievements
reflect well on the department," says William Jones, C. F. Houghton Professor
of Chemistry and chair of the Department of Chemistry.
One of Krauss' research interests is in using pieces of semiconductor only a few
molecules in diameter for medical purposes. For instance, such semiconductor units,
called quantum dots, could be used to sense pathogens like the bacterium E.
Coli, or for teasing out the exact structure of strands of DNA.
"I am very honored to have been selected as a Watson Young Investigator,"
says Krauss. "With support from this award I hope to further the understanding
of semiconductor quantum dots as well as their use as novel biological sensors."
The James D. Watson Investigator initiative is part of the $225 million Generating
Employment through New York State Science (Gen*NY*sis) program, which supports
life sciences research being conducted at New York's public, not-for-profit, and
private academic research institutions. The awards are designed to recognize outstanding
early career life scientists with leadership potential in making scientific discoveries
that could lead to economic development.
Krauss, along with nine other recipients, received their awards in a formal ceremony
on Feb. 10, in Albany, where James D. Watson gave a 10-minute address after receiving
a special commendation for scientific accomplishments. Watson is a Nobel Prize
laureate for the discovery of the structure of DNA.
"This support for our finest young biotechnology scientists and engineers
will help to further secure New York's role as an international leader in high-tech
and biotechnology research and economic development," Governor Pataki said.
"These grants will support the world-class research being performed by some
of the best young minds at New York's colleges and universities."
Russell W. Bessette, M.D., Executive Director of the New York State Office of
Science, Technology and Academic Research (NYSTAR), said, "These groundbreaking,
first-of-its-kind awards, will encourage these early career biotechnology scientists
to stay and conduct their critically important research here in New York State.
In doing so, these scientists will be positioned to make the important advancements
in biotechnology that will lead to the State's future economic growth."
Grants from the James D. Watson Investigator Program are being made to scientists
who are performing their research in the life sciences, biomedical sciences or
in other life science-enabling disciplines such as engineering, material science,
chemistry, computer science, electronics, physics, bioinformatics, nanotechnologies
and applications of microelectronics and micro-electromechanical devices.
About the University of Rochester
The University of Rochester (www.rochester.edu) is one of the nation's leading private universities. Located in Rochester, N.Y., the University gives students exceptional opportunities for interdisciplinary study and close collaboration with faculty through its unique cluster-based curriculum. Its College of Arts, Sciences, and Engineering is complemented by the Eastman School of Music, Simon School of Business, Warner School of Education, Laboratory for Laser Energetics, Schools of Medicine and Nursing, and the Memorial Art Gallery.