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Oct. 11, 2002

RELEASE: 02-110AR                                                                                

Dalton Named Astrobiology Deputy: NASA Ames Research Center has appointed Bonnie Dalton as deputy director for the Astrobiology and Space Research Directorate. She most recently served as acting chief of the NASA Ames Life Sciences Division. Dalton started her career at NASA Ames in 1963 as a bacteriologist. Dalton has made significant contributions to the life sciences program in several capacities, as payload manager for Spacelab missions, branch chief for the Science Payload Operations Branch, and deputy division chief and division chief (acting) for the Life Sciences Division. She has played a key role in the development of requirements and budgets for Ames' participation in the International Space Station. In addition, she has focused the division's research on molecular biology and the use of both hypergravity and artificial microgravity to understand the elemental forces controlling the protein structures and subsequent biological systems, along with expanding the division's bio and nanotechnology capabilities and applications. Dalton has a master’s degree in microbiology from Montana State University, and an MBA in management and finance from Golden Gate University. For more information: Victoria Steiner, 650/604-0176 or by e-mail at: vsteiner@mail.arc.nasa.gov

NASA Astrobiology Institute Congratulates Another Nobel Prize Winner: Dr. Sydney Brenner, who previously advised the director of NASA Ames Research Center in the early stages of developing the NASA Astrobiology Institute, has been awarded the 2002 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. Brenner shares the award with H. Robert Horvitz and John E. Sulston. Their work on C. elegans, a small (1 mm) worm, proved it to be a novel experimental model organism. "The Laureates have identified key genes regulating organ development and programmed cell death and have shown that corresponding genes exist in higher species, including man. The discoveries are important for medical research and have shed new light on the pathogenesis of many diseases,” said the Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institutet. Brenner has served as a member of the distinguished NAI Director's Science Council from the time of its establishment by Director Baruch Blumberg. For more information: Kathleen Burton, 650/604-1731 or by e-mail at: kburton@mail.arc.nasa.gov

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