Cellular-structural biology ranks high in grants

The Health Science Center's department of cellular and structural biology has become the nation's third-largest recipient of grants from the National Institutes of Health among 29 departments of its type.

Federal grants to the department totaled $3.6 million for the federal fiscal year that ended in September 1992. Departments at Washington University in St. Louis and Harvard University ranked No. 1 and No. 2, respectively.

Barbara H. Bowman, PhD, professor and department chairman, said the department previously ranked No. 6 in the nation, and its federal grant total has risen to about $5 million this year.

"We are very proud of the continuing recognition of the quality of our colleagues in cellular and structural biology," said Sanford A. Miller, PhD, dean of the Health Science Center's Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. "All credit for this outstanding performance belongs to Dr. Bowman and her team. Her leadership brought the department to its current position."

Miller added that other programs in the graduate school also ranked highly .

"Almost all were in the top 30 percent or better in the country, microbiology ranking 10th out of 103 departments and the Institute of Biotechnology 12th among similar departments," he said.

Two large grants in the department of cellular and structural biology account for about $2 million of the department's 1992 total. Susan L. Naylor, PhD, is leading an initiative to map the human genome that is supported by a five-year, $7.7 million grant. Bowman heads a research team in a five-year, $4.6 million grant to study how genes change as people grow older.

"We've increased our grant support dramatically over the past 10 years, and it has gone straight up," Bowman said. "We have highly- esteemed researchers working in timely areas of human biology and genetics."