Senator John Heinz

RELATED NEWS

  • Scientists You Must Know, from the Chemical Heritage Foundation, presents a short documentary on Robert Langer’s life and enormously broad swath of work go >>
  • Business Insider profiles Hugh Herr and his evolution from rock climber to bionics inventor go >>
  • Katie Couric talks to Dean Kamen about his 'Luke' prosthetic arm, for Yahoo! News go >>
  • The premiere of John Luther Adams' "Sila - The Breath of the World" is reviewed in The New York Times go >>
  • Dean Kamen talks to ZD Net about FIRST, turning innovation into a competition, and why failure is a critical part of the formula for success go >>
  • Leila Janah is interviewed about Samasource on ReadWrite.com go >>
  • Forbes takes a look at Dean Kamen’s Stirling Engine go >>
  • Christopher Field to receive the Roger Revelle Medal from the American Geophysical Union go >>
  • Robert Langer receives $500,000 Kyoto Prize for Advanced Technology from the Inamori Foundation go >>
  • Curt Ellis is interviewed by NationSwell about FoodCorps go >>
  • Sal Khan is interviewed by Katie Couric go >>
  • Sanjeev Arora and Project ECHO are profiled by David Bornstein at The New York Times go >>
  • A recent in-depth interview with Peter Matthiessen is published in The Believer go >>
  • Jay Keasling receives one of four 2014 Eni Awards, the 200,000 euro Renewable Energy Prize go >>
  • Joseph DeRisi collaborates on DNA technology that quickly diagnoses a lethal bacteria that put a young boy in a coma go >>
  • ECHO Care, modeled on Sanjeev Arora's Project ECHO, is profiled by the Albuquerque Journal go >>
  • The New York Times writes about John Luther Adams' love of baseball go >>
  • Elizabeth Kolbert examines work and leisure in her review of Brigid Schulte's new book, Overwhelmed go >>
  • Tom FitzGerald accepts presidential nomination to Ohio River commission, ORSANCO go >>
  • Richard Alley describes the impact of melting Antarctic glaciers on sea level rise for Mother Jones' Inquiring Minds podcast go >>
  • Abraham Verghese discusses his advocacy of medical humanism during a visit at the State University of New York at Buffalo go >>
  • Dee Boersma and her 30 years of penguin research is profiled in Audubon magazine go >>
  • Yale Environment 360 asks John Holdren five questions about the National Climate Assessment go >>
  • Joe DeRisi is profiled for the Bay Area Art and Science Interdisciplinary Sessions go >>
  • Sanjeev Arora's Project ECHO and the impact of telemedicine are profiled by the Council of State Governments go >>
  • Bernice Johnson Reagon on receiving the Domestic Human Rights Award from Global Exchange go >>
  • Carol Gilligan gives the inaugural lecture at the Carr Center for Reproductive Justice at NYU School of Law go >>
  • Dean Kamen's electrode-controlled prosthetic arm, named 'Luke' after Luke Skywalker, is approved by the FDA go >>
  • Popular Science profiles Dean Kamen's collaboration on an "eco-community center" which includes his Slingshot water purifier go >>
  • James Nachtwey discusses his experiences covering Afghanistan's civil war in the 90s at Dartmouth University go >>
  • Jane Lubchenco awarded the 2014 NatureServe Conservation Award go >>
  • Marian Wright Edelman's career in Washington fighting poverty is profiled by The Chronice of Philanthropy go >>
  • John Luther Adams profiled by The New York Times before premiere of 'Become Ocean' go >>
  • Richard Feely's work on the effects of ocean acidification on a key marine food source is profiled in Seattle Times go >>
  • Jonathan Foley to lead the California Academy of Sciences go >>
  • John Holdren is interviewed on NPR's Living On Earth go >>
  • Hugh Herr and his work with Boston Marathon victim Adrianne Haslet-Davis is profiled by the Christian Science Monitor go >>
  • CNN profiles Robert Langer's work to develop implanted microchips programmed to administer drugs at a given time, interval and dose go >>
  • Dean Kamen talks to the BBC about why he created a "robot superbowl" go >>
  • Paul Farmer interviewed about Rwanda's significant healthcare recovery over the last 20 years go >>
  • Jonathan Foley interviewed on NPR's Science Friday go >>
  • Geoffrey Canada to advise on New York's plan to spend $2 billion on school technology go >>
  • Jane Lubchenco returns to Oregon State University as Distinguished University Professor and Adviser in Marine Studies go >>
  • Leila Janah, Samasource and SamaUSA are profiled by BBC News go >>
  • Jonathan Foley is interviewed for Marketplace on NPR go >>
  • Jonathan Foley's Five Point Plan to Feed the World is the cover article for National Geographic go >>
  • James Balog awarded Duke University LEAF Award for fine arts contributions in the environment go >>
  • John Luther Adams is the 2014 recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for Music go >>
  • Richard Jackson pens article on healthy communities for the Idaho Statesman go >>
  • Mario Molina receives the Knight medal of the French Legion of Honor go >>
  • Dan Simpson, columnist at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, writes Op-Ed on this year's Heinz Awards go >>
  • Salman Khan is named a Presidential Ambassador for Global Entrepreneurship go >>
  • Peter Matthiessen, renowned writer and naturalist, and 6th Heinz Award recipient for Arts and Humanities, dies at 86 go >>
  • Peter Matthiessen's extraordinary life is profiled in The New York Times Magazine go >>
  • Ralph Cavanagh writes piece on the progress of utility companies and energy efficiency go >>
  • Hugh Herr gives his 2014 TED talk including a dance finale by a survivor who lost her lower leg in the Boston Marathon bombing go >>
  • Ann Hamilton commisioned to create large-scale public art installation for Seattle’s new waterfront reconstruction project go >>
  • Leila Janah's SamaUSA is profiled at NationSwell.com go >>
  • Paul Famer interviewed by Ray Chambers at The Huffington Post about ending tuberculosis go >>
  • Hugh Herr and his lab help Boston Marathon victim to dance again at TED go >>
  • The new documentary about Cary Fowler's work, Seeds of Time, is profiled at Grist.org go >>
  • Mario Molina and other AAAS scientists sound the alarm on climate change go >>
  • William Thomas is interviewed by Next Avenue on his new book on aging: Second Wind go >>
  • Abraham Verghese interviewed by the El Paso's News Paper Tree go >>
  • Leila Janah profiled in the March issue of Chronicle of Philanthropy go >>
  • Jacques d'Amboise lends his expertise and teaching methods to ten educators from across the country go >>
  • Khan Academy to gain exclusive partnership with College Board to offer free test prep courses go >>
  • Seeds of Time, a documentary that follows Cary Fowler as he works to stock the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, debuts at SXSW go >>
  • Jonathan Foley and his work is profiled at MinnPost.com go >>
  • Millie Dresselhaus is one of two Heinz Awardees in 2014 class inducted into National Inventors Hall of Fame go >>
  • Ashok Gadgil is one of two Heinz Awardees in 2014 class inducted into National Inventors Hall of Fame go >>
  • Leroy Hood's Institute for Systems Biology to test P4 ideas with nine-month pilot study, the Hundred Person Wellness Project go >>
  • After 23 years Geoffrey Canada will step down as chief executive of the Harlem Children's Zone go >>
  • Al Gore reviews Elizabeth Kolbert's book, The Sixth Extinction, for The New York Times Sunday Book Review go >>
  • Janine Benyus talks with Tim Brown of IDEO as part of a new TED editorial series, â??Questions Worth Askingâ?? go >>
  • Paul Ehrlich to receive the 2014 Frontiers of Knowledge Award for Ecology and Conservation Biology from the BBVA Foundation go >>
  • Elizabeth Kolbert's newest book, The Sixth Extinction, is reviewed by The New York Times go >>
  • Mason Bates co-curates Chicago Symphony Orchestra's reimagined MusicNOW series go >>
  • Dee Boersma's work on Magellanic penguins is profiled on NPR go >>
  • Dee Boersma's 28 year study on the direct impact of climate change on Magellanic penguins is profiled in The New York Times go >>
  • The New York Times reviews "Jacques' Art Nest," a benefit performance for Jacques d'Amboise's National Dance Institute go >>
  • Christopher Field is the 2013 recipient of the 400,000 euro BBVA Frontiers of Knowledge Award in climate change go >>
  • Elizabeth Kolbert interviewed at newyorker.com on her writing on species extinction go >>
  • Freeman Hrabowski writes Op-Ed for The Baltimore Sun go >>
  • Hugh Herr's BiOM prosthetic and upcoming research is profiled in Boston magazine go >>
  • Robert Langer is one of six recipients of the 2013 Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences go >>
  • Freeman Hrabowski is interviewed in The New York Times go >>
  • Millie Dresselhaus receives the 2013 Von Hippel Award from the Materials Research Society go >>
  • Richard Lugar receives the Presidential Medal of Freedom go >>
  • Hugh Herr is profiled in Men's Fitness magazine go >>

The Heinz Awards

2008

Joseph DeRisi

Joseph DeRisi receives the Heinz Award in Technology, the Economy and Employment for his extraordinary breakthroughs in detecting both new and existing viruses.

An innovative and selfless scientist, Dr. Joseph DeRisi's breakthrough creation of a viral detection platform for malaria and other infectious diseases has helped advance biomedicine's ability to detect both existing and new viruses. As a professor of biochemistry at the University of California, San Francisco, where he also holds the post of Howard Hughes Medical Investigator, he is one of the world's foremost researchers in the application of molecular genomics to the study of infectious disease.

Dr. DeRisi stands at the intersection of the disciplines driving the life sciences - genomics, bioinformatics, virology, materials science and computer engineering. Together with his longtime collaborator, Dr. Don Ganem, he pioneered the development and use of the ViroChip, a band-aid-sized glass wafer that contains a microarray of 22,000 DNA sequences from more than 1,300 viral families. This "diagnostics on a chip" enables scientists to not only quickly and accurately identify existing viruses, but also to detect new viruses that could emerge as pandemic threats. In 2003, the ViroChip identified the SARS virus within 24 hours of receiving the sample from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Befitting his commitment to open access publishing within the scientific arena, Dr. DeRisi has not pursued a patent for the ViroChip, allowing researchers around the world to use the invention for free.

Notwithstanding his work in virus detection, Dr. DeRisi's primary focus has been on finding a cure for malaria, a disease that infects up to 500 million people annually, killing between 700,000 and 2.7 million, mostly children. He and his team developed a malaria-specific DNA chip, similar to the ViroChip that enabled them to characterize the parasite's distinctive 48-hour life cycle, a breakthrough that could pave the way for potential drug and vaccine therapy.

As part of the California Institute for Quantitative Biosciences, a cooperative effort among three campuses of the University of California and private industry, Dr. DeRisi's laboratory is working to apply the quantitative sciences (mathematics, physics, chemistry and engineering) to biosciences toward improving human health. He also has taken on a number of other challenges, from investigating a cure for the common cold to an analysis of the disappearance of a half-million honeybee colonies in the United States, a situation that could have a viral culprit at its roots.

Joseph DeRisi has made breakthrough discoveries in the laboratory that have provided clarity and insight into the detection of some of the world's most threatening viruses as well as distinguished himself as a generous and tireless advocate for the free and open sharing of scientific research. With a brilliant mind and expansive heart, he has ennobled the field of science.

Note: This profile is excerpted from the commemorative brochure published at the time of the awards' presentation.

Speech

10/21/2008 - Acceptance Speech

Many, many, many thanks are in order especially to Teresa Heinz and the Heinz Family Foundation. This is a tremendous honor for me.  As a molecular biologist, as any current biologist, we stand on the shoulders of giants and I have those giants that came before me to thank, as well.  But I also must thank my family for their unwavering support: my wife Suzanne, my parents, Bill and Ruth, and my sister, Maria, who could be with me here right now.  And as a scientist, we rely on crucial mentorship.  And I've received amazing mentorship throughout my career, without which I would not be here by dozens of outstanding people beginning with public school actually in Sacramento, California, extending through UC, Santa Cruz where I went to undergraduate and Patrick Brown, my mentor at Stanford University.  Which really illuminated, he illuminated for me completely new approaches to biomedical research and just opened my mind to how things could be done.  And now I’m at the fantastic research environment-UC, San Francisco which is nurturing this new effort to pursue global health as an initiative and priority.

I also need to thank my lab because, although I do still get into the lab now and then, it's really my lab that does all the work that you see today.  And my close collaborator, Don Ganem and the other people at UCSF that help me.  And the people who make the work possible Herb: and Marion Sandler, the Strategic Program for Asthma Research, the Packard Foundation and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

And so, I really don't have that time to say much else, other than to remind you that we actually live in a very unusual period where the political climate has been especially hostile and damaging to science in a way that it has never been before.  From stem cells to evolution to global warming; from a strangled NIH to for-profit entities that seek to stratify and ultimately restrict what science you as the public actually have access to read.  We stand now, literally to lose a completely whole generation of scientists, and with them, I remind you, the next biomedical achievements that will save lives here and in every country around the world.

This needs to change!  Thank you very much.

Joseph DeRisi