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American Crystallographic Association 2016 Awardees

[ACA logo]

The following awards will be presented at the 2016 American Crystallographic Association Annual Meeting, 22-26 July, in Denver, CO, USA.

2016 Trueblood Award to Axel Brunger

[Axel Brunger]

Axel Brunger (Howard Hughes Medical Inst., Stanford U., USA) will receive the 2016 Trueblood Award for 'exceptional achievements in computational or chemical crystallography'. Brunger carries out cutting-edge research on the structural mechanisms of synaptic neurotransmitter release, complementing X-ray crystallography with single-molecule microscopy, and is exploring the new possibilities that X-ray free electron laser techniques offer for the structural determination of large macromolecular assemblies.

2016 Fankuchen Award to Elspeth Garman

[Elspeth Garman]

Elspeth Garman (Oxford U., UK) will receive the 2016 Fankuchen Award. Elspeth is being recognized for her absolute dedication to teaching crystallography in seminars and workshops all over the world, and her great contributions to improve cryo-methods in crystallography.

Garman introduced mitigating measures such as the use of small molecules as radical scavengers. She experimentally determined the maximum X-ray dose that can be delivered to a macromolecule before compromising its structure - the 'Garman limit' - and presented a method to predict the lifetime of proteins exposed to certain radiation doses. She also pioneered the use of an online UV-visible spectrometer to detect the early signs of radiation damage.

2016 Bau Award to Benno Shoenborn

[Benno Shoenborn]

Benno Shoenborn (Los Alamos National Lab, USA) is the 2016 recipient of the ACA Bau Neutron Diffraction Award for his pioneering work on neutron crystallography and its application to biology. Benno has published over 100 publications on the subject, and has mentored, trained and inspired numerous students, post-docs and early-career researchers, expanding the reach of neutron crystallography to a larger community of scientists and setting the grounds for its further development.

Being one of the pioneers of the technique with Paul Langan, Benno promoted the creation of the first neutron protein crystallography beamline in North America, the Protein Crystallography Station (PCS) at the pulsed neutron source at Los Alamos Neutron Science Center (LANSCE), a state-of-the-art facility that helps users in every step of a neutron diffraction experiment, from protein production and deuteration, to data collection and analysis.

2016 Etter Early Career Award to Jason Benedict

[Jason Benedict]

Jason Benedict, (U. of Buffalo, USA) is the recipient of the 2016 Margaret C. Etter Early Career Award. Jason has been recognized as an outstanding mentor to students. He received national attention for launching the US Crystal Growing Competition in 2014, which aims to teach the fundamentals of crystallography to students and educators in the K-12 level across the nation. With Benedict at the helm the event has grown to almost 100 participants from over 15 regional institutions.

For more information on these award winners, visit