Two Zuckerman Institute Principal Investigators are among five Columbia University faculty named as Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). This is among the most prestigious honors to be awarded by AAAS, the world’s largest scientific organization.
Steven Siegelbaum, PhD, who is Professor and Chair of the Department of Neuroscience at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) and a member of the Kavli Institute for Brain Science, was selected as an AAAS Fellow for his groundbreaking work investigating how the brain’s electrical signals and circuits regulate and store information. His research has been particularly informative in exposing how circuits in the hippocampus — the brain region involved in consolidating and storing memory — are organized, and how changes in these circuits may contribute to neuropsychiatric disorders associated with impaired social interactions, such as schizophrenia.
AAAS also recognized Michael Shadlen, MD, PhD, for pioneering the study of decision-making at the cellular, behavioral and computational levels. Dr. Shadlen, who is also an Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and member of both the Kavli Institute and the Grossman Center for Statistics of the Mind studies the brain circuits that underlie our ability to deliberate and make choices. Understanding these fundamental components of reasoning, says Dr. Shadlen, are key to deciphering the origins of human thought.
Drs. Siegelbaum and Shadlen share this honor with Columbia’s Andrea Califano, PhD, Professor of Chemical Systems in the Department of Systems Biology, Thomas DiPrete, PhD, Professor of Sociology and Robert Burke, MD, Professor of Neurology and Pathology.
This year, AAAS elevated 347 members to the rank of Fellow because of scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. This year’s five Columbia scientists selected as Fellows join 50 other Columbia faculty who have also been recognized as AAAS Fellows for their contributions to science and society.
The 2015 AAAS Fellows will be formally announced in the AAAS News & Notes section of the journal Science on November 27, 2015. New Fellows will also be recognized at an awards ceremony during the 2016 AAAS Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C.