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Ross Prize 2017 Winner

Feinstein Institute, Molecular Medicine Award Ross Prize to Rockefeller University’s Jeffrey Ravetch  of Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School

MANHASSET, NY — The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research today announced that Jeffrey V. Ravetch, MD, PhD, the Theresa and Eugene M. Lang professor and head of the Leonard Wagner Laboratory of Molecular Genetics and Immunology at The Rockefeller University, is the recipient of the fifth annual Ross Prize in Molecular Medicine. The Ross Prize is awarded through the Feinstein Institute Press’s peer-reviewed, open-access journal, Molecular Medicine. The prize, which includes a $50,000 award, will be formally presented to Dr. Ravetch on June 5 at the New York Academy of Sciences in Manhattan, followed by lectures from Dr. Ravetch and other eminent researchers.

 “I am honored to receive the Ross Prize and join the distinguished group of researchers who have received this recognition.  I look forward to the award ceremony and discussing my work at the symposium. I hope my work continues to have impact on the development of innovative treatments for human diseases.” said Dr. Ravetch.

The Ross Prize is made possible by the generosity of Feinstein Institute board members Robin and Jack Ross. It is awarded annually by Molecular Medicine to scientists who have made a demonstrable impact in the understanding of human diseases pathogenesis and/or treatment, and who hold significant promise for making even greater contributions to the general field of molecular medicine.

“Jeffery Ravetch’s investigations of the immune system’s molecular structure solved the medical mystery of how antibodies can both activate and inhibit the immune response,” said Feinstein Institute President and CEO Kevin J. Tracey, MD, who also serves as editor emeritus of Molecular Medicine. “His discoveries have provided the fundamental knowledge that enable scientists to engineer antibodies to treat a variety of autoimmune conditions.”

After a brief award presentation, a research symposium will be held during which Dr. Ravetch will discuss his discoveries in the field of Fc receptor biology. Rafi Ahmed, PhD, director of the Emory Vaccine Center, and Ronald Levy, MD, professor and chief of the Division of Oncology at Stanford Medicine, will also speak during the symposium. To learn more about the Ross Prize celebration and symposium, and to register for the event, please visit www.nyas.org/RossPrize2017.

Dr. Ravetch’s research focuses on identifying the genetic components that cause immune system cells to respond to specific antibodies. His laboratory’s mission is to gain a better understanding of how a functioning immune system protects organisms from invaders, and how a dysfunctional immune system attacks the body's own tissues. His work has specifically focused on a family of protein receptors called Fc receptors, which he and his team have been studying for the past 30 years.  His work has defined these receptors and demonstrated their essential role in immune response. 

Past recipients of the Ross Prize are: Charles N. Serhan, PhD, DSc, director of the Center for Experimental Therapeutics and Reperfusion Injury at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, the Simon Gelman Professor of Anaesthesia at Harvard Medical School and professor at Harvard School of Dental Medicine; Lewis C. Cantley, PhD, the Meyer Director of the Sandra and Edward Meyer Cancer Center at Weill Cornell Medical College and NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital; John J. O’Shea, MD, scientific director at the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS); and Dan R. Littman, MD, PhD, the Helen L. and Martin S. Kimmel Professor of Molecular Immunology in the Skirball Institute of Biomolecular Medicine at New York University School of Medicine.