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Prof. Dr.

Winslow R. Briggs

Year of election: 1986
Section: Genetics/Molecular Biology and Cell Biology
City: Palo Alto, CA
Country: USA
CV Winslow Briggs - PDF (English)

Research

Winslow Briggs has been contributing to our knowledge of plant responses to light for over fifty years. His early work involved characterizing phototropism (growth directed by light direction) physiologically, a response activated by blue light. Later he made numerous contributions to the physiology and the biochemical characterization of phytochrome, a red-far red-reversible pigment involved in practically every stage in a plant’s life cycle. Recently he returned to studying blue light-induced responses and identified and characterized the phototropins, flavins-binding proteins, as the responsible photoreceptors. He discovered that the two chromophore modules of phototropin were remarkably similar to modules found in otherwise unrelated proteins in a large number of bacteria, including plant and animal pathogens. He was part of a team that showed that a histidine kinase in the animal pathogen Brucella abortus that carried the module was required for bacterial virulence and that expression of that virulence required activation of the histidine kinase by blue light.

Career

  • since 1993 Director Emeritus, Department of Plant Biology, Carnegie Institution of Washington, USA
  • since 1993 Professor Emeritus, Department of Biological Sciences, Stanford University
  • 1973-1993 Director, Department of Plant Biology, Carnegie Institution of Washington
  • 1973-1993 Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, Stanford University
  • 1967-1973 Professor, Department of Biology, Harvard University
  • 1966-1967 Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, Stanford University
  • 1962-1966 Associate Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, Stanford University
  • 1957-1962 Assistant Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, Stanford University
  • 1955-1957 Instructor, Department of Biological Sciences, Stanford University
  • 1955 Habilitation
  • 1952 Ph.D. in Biology
  • 1946-1951 Biology Studies

Functions

  • since 2006 Guest Editor, Molecular Plant (a new international journal from China)
  • since 2004 Associate Editor, Annual Review of Plant Biology
  • 2000 Chairman, Gordon Conference Special meeting on Photoreceptors in Plants, Animals, and Microorganisms
  • 1972-1993 Editor, Annual Review of Plant Physiology
  • 1993 Chairman, Gordon Conference on Plant Molecular Biology
  • 1982 Chairman, Gordon Conference on Sensory Transduction in Microorganisms
  • 1981 President, American Institute of Biological Sciences
  • 1980-1983 Chairman, Botany Section, National Academy of Sciences
  • 1977-1978 President, California Botanical Society
  • 1975-1976 President, American Society of Plant Physiologists

Honours and Memberships

  • 2009 Awarded International Prize for Biology, Japan Society for the Promotion of Science
  • 2007 Awarded Gude Prize, American Society of Plant Biologists
  • 2002 Awarded doctoral degree honoris causa by the University of Freiburg, Germany
  • 2000 Awarded Finsen Medal, Association Internationale de Photobiologie
  • 1995 Awarded the Sterling Hendricks Medal, United States Department of Agriculture and American Chemical Society
  • 1994 Awarded Stephen Hales Prize, American Society of Plant Physiologists
  • 1984-1985 Alexander von Humboldt U.S. Senior Scientist Award
  • 1974 Elected to National Academy of Sciences, USA
  • 1973-1974 John Simon Guggenheim Fellow

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