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Stanford professor wins Lurie Prize in Biomedical Sciences


The Stanford D.H. Chen Professor of Bioengineering and of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Karl Deisseroth Ph.D. ’98 M.D. ’00 has been selected as this year’s winner of the Lurie Prize in Biomedical Sciences.

The Lurie Prize, which includes a $100,000 reward, recognizes talented scientists under the age of 52 for their exceptional contributions to research and scientific advancement.

Deisseroth is being recognized for pioneering the field of optogenetics and the development of CLARITY, a new tool to study the brain. Optogenetics uses genetic manipulation and optics to discover the behavior of brain cells.

CLARITY is a method used to make biological tissues, like the brain, transparent, allowing for the biological structures within to be viewed in detail.

Deisseroth’s developments have advanced understanding of the brain considerably and have the potential to help scientists develop therapies for diseases like depression, Parkinson’s, schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s, among others.

The Lurie prize is awarded by the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH) and was endowed by philanthropist and FNIH board member Ann Lurie.

The winner was selected by a jury of six notable biomedical researchers that was chaired by Solomon H. Snyder, the Vice Chairman for Science of the FNIH.


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