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Feinberg and SQI present the Kimberly Prize to Jennifer Doudna

Daily archive photo by Katie Pach

The Feinberg School of Medicine. Feinberg and the Simpson Querrey Institute for Epigenetics awarded CRISPR scientist Jennifer Doudna the inaugural Kimberly Prize in Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics.

The Feinberg School of Medicine and the Simpson Querrey Institute for Epigenetics awarded their first Kimberly Prize in Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics to biochemist Jennifer Doudna, Northwestern announced Sept. 1. 14.

Doudna, a professor at the University of California, Berkeley, co-developed CRISPR-Cas9, a technology that can modify DNA with significant precision. CRISPR shows promise for treating complex diseases such as cancer and heart disease, according to the National Library of Medicine.

An advocate for the ethical use of genome editing and CRISPR technology, Doudna was awarded the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work.

“Jennifer is a wonderful person and scientist and is very generous with her time and talent,” Feinberg Prof. and Simpson Querrey director Ali Shilatifard said in a press release. “She is the epitome of what a great scientist should be: not only wanting to do groundbreaking science, but also wanting to inspire others to do the same.”

The Kimberly Prize is the largest biochemistry prize in the United States, worth $250,000. It is funded by NU Administrator Kimberly Querrey in honor of her late husband and NU Administrator Louis A. Simpson.

Doudna will deliver a speech at the Feinberg campus in Chicago in the spring to commemorate this honor.

“In establishing this award, Northwestern University emphasizes the importance of supporting basic research for the betterment of society,” Doudna said. “I’m excited about the opportunities for us to develop and apply tools like CRISPR technology to help solve real-world challenges.”

E-mail: [email protected]

Twitter: @rjleung7

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