Bonnie L. Bassler is a Professor of Molecular Biology at Princeton University. She received a B.S. in Biochemistry from the University of California at Davis and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the Johns Hopkins University. She performed postdoctoral work in Genetics at the Agouron Institute. She joined the Princeton faculty in 1994. Her research focuses on the molecular mechanisms that bacteria use for inter-cellular communication. This process is called quorum sensing. Bassler is the Director of Graduate Studies in the Molecular Biology Department, and she teaches both undergraduate and graduate courses. She was elected to the American Academy of Microbiology in 2002, and she was elected a fellow of AAAS in 2004. She was awarded a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship in 2002, and she is the 2003 Theobald Smith Society Waksman Award recipient. Bassler received the New Jersey Thomas A. Edison Patent Award for Medical Technology in 2003 and the New York Intellectual Property Lawyer’s Association chose her as the 2004 Inventor of the Year. Bassler is an editor for Molecular Microbiology, and on the editorial boards of the Journal of Bacteriology, Genetics, and Molecular and Cellular Proteomics. She serves on many grant, fellowship, and award review panels.
Carl F. Nathan is Chairman, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, and co-chairman, Graduate Program in Immunology and Microbial Pathogenesis at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University. He joined the faculty in 1985 as the Stanton Griffis Distinguished Professor of Medicine. Prior to his current appointment, he was the founding director of the Tri-Institutional M.D.-Ph.D. Program and served as Senior Associate Dean for Research and Acting Dean of Cornell University Medical College. He previously was on the faculty at the Rockefeller University. Dr. Nathan’s research furnished some of the first molecular explanations for macrophage activation and antimicrobial mechanisms of macrophages. He has made several fundamental discoveries about cytokine activation of macrophages, and determined that a major mechanism of host defense is expression of inducible nitric oxide (NO) synthase (iNOS). He holds an M.D. from Harvard Medical School. After training at Massachusetts General Hospital, the National Cancer Institute and Yale, he was board-certified in internal medicine and oncology.
Thomas F. O’Brien is Senior Physician in the Division of Infectious Diseases and Medical Director of the Microbiology Laboratory at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, and Associate Professor