CALS professors Sean Carroll and Laura Kiessling elected to National Academy of Sciences

CALS faculty members Sean Carroll and Laura Kiessling were elected to the National Academy of Sciences on May 1. Election to the NAS is considered one of the most prestigious honors that can be bestowed upon an American scientist. Including Carroll and Kiessling, CALS now has 22 faculty members who are members of the NAS.

Carroll, professor of molecular biology and genetics, and Kiessling, professor of chemistry and biochemistry, are among 72 new fellows admitted to the 144-year old academy in recognition of their distinguished achievements and ongoing contributions to original research.

Carroll, an investigator in the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, has been a member of the UW-Madison faculty since 1987. He studies how genes and genetic regulation drive the development and evolution of diverse animal forms and has authored two popular science books on the topic. His work on fruit flies and other insects has revealed some of the key genetic players underlying major events in animal development, such as limb growth and coloration patterns.

Kiessling joined the UW-Madison faculty in 1991 and has distinguished herself as a pioneer in research at the interface of chemistry and biology. Through studies of how cells and molecules interact, her research has provided insights into the processes underlying a range of human diseases from inflammation and tuberculosis to cancer and Alzheimer’s disease. She is also a MacArthur Foundation Fellow, having been awarded one of the foundation’s “genius” grants in 1999.

The National Academy of Sciences was established in 1863 by a congressional act of incorporation signed by Abraham Lincoln. A private organization of scientists and engineers dedicated to the furtherance of science and its use for the general welfare, it is available upon request to advise the federal government in any matter of science or technology.