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Roger Davis elected to National Academy of Sciences

  Roger J. Davis, PhD

Roger J. Davis, PhD

The National Academy of Sciences has announced the election of Roger J. Davis, PhD, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, the H. Arthur Smith Chair in Cancer Research and professor of molecular medicine and biochemistry & molecular pharmacology.

Dr. Davis was among 84 new members and 21 foreign associates elected, in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research. Those elected bring the total number of active members to 2,382 and the total number of foreign associates to 484.

The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit society of distinguished scholars. Established by an act of Congress signed by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863, it is charged with providing independent, objective advice to the nation on matters related to science and technology. Scientists are elected by their peers to membership in the NAS for outstanding contributions to research. As the role of science has expanded in the United States, the National Academy has grown to include the Institute of Medicine, the National Academy of Engineering and the National Research Council.

The goal of Davis’ laboratory is to understand the molecular mechanism by which inflammation contributes to diabetes, cancer and stroke. His studies of stress signaling pathways have led to the discovery of new genes that contribute to the development of these devastating diseases. A focus of Davis’ current studies is the design of novel therapeutic strategies.

Davis graduated from Queens’ College of the University of Cambridge, United Kingdom, where he received a bachelor’s degree in natural sciences, advanced degrees in biochemistry and natural sciences, and a doctorate degree in biochemistry. He also was a research fellow at Queens’ College. Davis served as a Damon Runyon/Walter Winchell Cancer Fund Fellow at UMass Medical School in the laboratory of Michael Czech, PhD, prior to joining the UMMS faculty in 1985. He was appointed as the first Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator at UMMS in 1990.

Davis is a fellow of the Royal Society, the European Molecular Biology Organization, the American Academy of Microbiology, the National Academy of Inventors and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He was awarded the Chancellor’s Medal for Distinguished Scholarship by Chancellor Michael F. Collins in 2012.

Davis joins four UMass Medical School colleagues in the National Academy of Sciences: Nobel laureate Craig C. Mello, PhD, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, the Blais University Chair in Molecular Medicine, distinguished professor of RNA therapeutics and professor of molecular medicine; Victor R. Ambros, PhD, the Silverman Chair in Natural Sciences and professor of molecular medicine; Melissa J. Moore, PhD, professor of RNA therapeutics; and Michael R. Green, MD, PhD, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, the Lambi and Sarah Adams Chair in Genetic Research, chair and professor of molecular, cell & cancer biology, professor of molecular medicine, director of the UMass Medical School Cancer Center, and co-director of the Li Weibo Institute for Rare Diseases Research. Dr. Green is also a member of the National Academy of Medicine, as are Robert H. Brown Jr., DPhil, MD, the Leo P. and Theresa M. LaChance Chair in Medical Research and chair and professor of neurology, and John E. Ware, PhD, professor of quantitative health sciences.

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