Autumn General Meeting
November 14, 2008
Vamsi Krishna Mootha
The American Philosophical Society awarded the 2008 Judson Daland Prize for Achievement in Patient-oriented Clinical Investigation to Dr. Vamsi K. Mootha in recognition of his achievements in genomic approaches to human mitochondrial disorders. The award was presented by Clyde F. Barker, Vice President of the Society and new chairman of the prize selection committee.
Vamsi Mootha is an assistant professor and physician at Massachusetts General Hospital’s Center for Human Genetic Research; assistant professor at Harvard Medical School’s Department of Systems Biology and of Medicine; and senior associate member at the Broad Institute of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University. He received his M.D. in 1998 from the Harvard-M.I.T. Division of Health Sciences and Technology and joined the Harvard faculty in 2002.
A gifted physician and researcher, Vamsi Mootha has, through integrated application of mass spectroscopy, genomics, computation and clinical medicine, greatly elucidated the network properties of mitochondria and how these properties go awry in human disease. His efforts have led to the rapid identification of nuclear genes underlying human mitochondria disease, as well as to the discovery that mitochondrial dysfunction is associated with the common form of type 2 diabetes mellitus. This groundbreaking work has profound implications for virtually all common diseases, including cancer.
The prize is named for Dr. Judson Daland, born in 1860, a prominent Philadelphia physician and outstanding figure in medical research who left the bulk of his estate to the Society to support research in clinical medicine. The prize recognizes outstanding achievement in clinical investigation, particularly patient-oriented research.
The selection committee consisted of chairman Victor A. McKusick, University Professor of Medical Genetics, Johns Hopkins University; Clyde F. Barker, Donald Guthrie Professor, University of Pennsylvania; John N. Loeb, Professor Emeritus of Medicine, Columbia University; Arno Motulsky, Professor Emeritus of Medicine and Genome Sciences, University of Washington; and Thomas E. Starzl, Professor of Surgery, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.