News Release: Research

Mar. 16,  2011

March of Dimes Honors Emory Fragile X Researcher With Lifetime Achievement Award

News Article ImageStephen T. Warren, PhD

Stephen T. Warren, PhD, the first scientist to identify the gene responsible for fragile X syndrome, is being honored today by the March of Dimes. Warren will receive the March of Dimes/Colonel Harland Sanders Award for Lifetime Achievement in the field of human genetics. The award will be presented in Vancouver at the annual Clinical Genetics Meeting of the American College of Medical Genetics.

Warren is the William P. Timmie professor and Charles Howard Candler chair of human genetics and a professor of biochemistry and pediatrics at Emory University School of Medicine.

Fragile X syndrome is the leading cause of inherited intellectual disability. In 1991, Warren and his colleagues published their work on the genetic abnormality responsible for fragile X syndrome – a mutation of the FMR1 gene – and the affected protein. He was initially funded by a March of Dimes Basil O’Connor Starter Scholar Award. Warren and his colleagues subsequently developed a test for fragile X syndrome and currently are conducting a clinical trial to test a therapeutic treatment for the condition.

Warren received his doctorate in human genetics from Michigan State University in 1981 and joined the faculty of Emory School of Medicine in 1985. He was elected to the Board of Directors of the American Society of Human Genetics in 1997 and was elected its president in 2006. He was editor-in-chief of the American Journal of Human Genetics from 1999 until 2005.

Among his many honors are the Albert E. Levy Faculty Award from Emory University, a MERIT award from the National Institutes of Health, the William Allan Award from the American Society of Human Genetics, and the inaugural William Rosen Research Award from the National Fragile X Foundation. He was elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies.

Established in 1986, the March of Dimes/Colonel Harland Sanders Award is given annually to an individual whose lifetime body of research and education has made a significant contribution to the genetic sciences.

The March of Dimes works to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. For more information, visit marchofdimes.com.

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