Charles Carter is a biophysicist, biochemist and protein crystallographer with a strong interest in areas related to the enzymology and structural and functional evolution of the aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases. His research uses a broad range of biophysical techniques, including combinatorial mutagenesis, to investigate long-range coupling of domain motion to catalysis.
George Fox is a biochemist and evolutionary biologist who was a co-discoverer of the Archaea, a breakthrough that revolutionized the way scientists think about the history of life on the Earth. He also pioneered the use of comparative analysis in the determination of RNA secondary structure and has made numerous contributions to bacterial phylogeny.
Yun-Xin Fu is a geneticist and evolutionary biologist at the University of Texas – Health Science Center at Houston. His work lies at the interface of population genetics (specifically, coalescent theory), molecular evolution, genomics and genetic epidemiology of complex disease.
Eugene Koonin’s group performs research in many areas of computational biology and evolutionary genomics, with a special emphasis on whole-genome approaches to the study of major transitions in life’s evolution, such as the origin of eukaryotes, the evolution of eukaryotic gene structure, and the origin and evolution of different classes of viruses, as well as evolutionary systems biology. He co-founded the journal Biology Direct, in an effort to explore a novel system of open peer review, and remains an editor-in-chief of this journal.
Arthur D. Riggs received his B.A. in chemistry from the University of California at Riverside in 1960 and his Ph.D. in biochemistry from the California Institute of Technology in 1966. He did postdoctoral training at the Salk Institute during 1966 to 1969, and since then he has been at City of Hope. He served as chair of the Department of Biology from 1982 to 2000, then director of Beckman Research Institute of City of Hope from 2007 to 2008. Since 2008, he has served as chair of the Department of Diabetes and Metabolic Diseases Research. Among other awards, he received the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation Research Award in 1979 for work that resulted in the bacterial production of human insulin. This work jump-started Genentech and the biotech industry. After the insulin project, Riggs turned his attention to recombinant antibodies, and this work set the stage for the successful use recombinant antibodies for the treatment of cancer. Riggs has also been a pioneer in the field of epigenetics, which is the study of persistent changes in gene expression that do not involve changes in primary base sequence. In recent years, Riggs’ research has been mainly on mammalian epigenetic mechanisms and DNA methylation. Riggs was elected to the United States National Academy of Sciences in 2006 and in 2008 received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the California Institute of Technology.
Andrei Rodin is a geneticist, evolutionary biologist and biostatistician at the University of Texas – Health Science Center at Houston. His primary research interests are in genetic epidemiology of complex diseases, systems biology data analysis methods development (specifically, reverse-engineering biological networks from large-scale datasets), molecular evolution, early evolution of life and phylogenetic analysis.
Andrey Rzhetsky is a computational biologist at the University of Chicago. He has worked on mathematical modeling for evolutionary biology, approaches to the analysis of large molecular networks and massive mining of biomedical literature.
Mark Safro is a molecular biophysicist and structural biologist at the Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel. His primary research interests are in protein crystallography, aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases, proteins mediating cell-cell adhesion and the link between aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases and human disease.
Victor Solovyev is a computational biologist and bioinformaticist with long-standing interest in computational genomics. He had served as Genome Annotation Group leader in Joint Genomic Institute, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, and leader of Computational Genomics Group at the Sanger Centre, Cambridge, U.K. He co-founded Softberry Inc., a bioinformatics software development company.