Archived article from Nov 3, 2000
Of the six scientists honored by the Biophysical Society as 2001 Society Fellows, two are prominent chemists at Rutgers — Helen M. Berman and Wilma K. Olson. The award honors distinguished members who have demonstrated excellence in science and contributed to the expansion of the field of biophysics. There are currently about 6,000 members of the society and, to date, only 45 have been selected as fellows.
"The awards to Professors Berman and Olson are an affirmation of their scientific achievements and recognize their dedication to the pursuit of knowledge," said Joseph J. Seneca, university vice president for academic affairs. "They have demonstrated excellence in research areas that have profound implications for the future well-being of society and a lifetime of deep commitment to the education and training of the next generation of scientists."
Berman is a professor of chemistry and director of both the Protein Data Bank, an international computer-based, three-dimensional atlas of biological macromolecules, and the Nucleic Acid Database that assembles and distributes structural information about nucleic acids. She was selected as a fellow based on her contributions to the area of macromolecular structure. Berman is also the year 2000 recipient of the Biophysical Society's Distinguished Service Award.
Olson is the Mary I. Bunting Professor of Chemistry and director of the Center for Molecular Biophysics and Biophysical Chemistry. She received the honor for her major contributions to molecular biophysics through groundbreaking studies of nucleic acids, in which she has developed and applied novel computational tools. Olson is also the president-elect of the Biophysical Society. She will serve as president for one year beginning February 2002.