By Greta Petry (December 4, 2007)
Applebee and Frank Named Distinguished Professors
Arthur Applebee and Joachim Frank have been named to the rank of Distinguished Professor by the State University of New York (SUNY) Board of Trustees. Distinguished Professor is the highest rank for a faculty member in the SUNY system.
Applebee is a past president of the National Conference on Research in Language and Literacy, and has been recognized for the contribution of his work by election to the International Reading Hall of Fame and by the David H. Russell Award for Distinguished Research in the Teaching of English. He has also been a Fellow of the Rockefeller Foundation Center at Bellagio, Italy, and received the SUNY Chancellor's award for Research Excellence.
Applebee is currently director of the National Study of Writing Instruction, examining teaching and learning in the core academic disciplines in schools across the United States.
Frank, a professor of biomedical sciences in the School of Public Health, was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2006. An investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute at the Wadsworth Center in Albany and a lab chief of the Laboratory for Computational Biology and Molecular Imaging, he has been a faculty member at the School of Public Health since its inception in 1986. A distinguished scientist at the Wadsworth Center for more than 30 years, he was honored with the University's Excellence in Research award in 2001.
Frank's pivotal role in the development of the field of molecular electron microscopy culminated in the publication of his papers on the structure of the ribosome and on the protein elongation cycle in the prestigious journals Nature, Science, and Cell. His lab develops methods of cryo-electron microscopy and three-dimensional reconstruction to study the mechanisms of protein biosynthesis.
His most recent work, published in EMBO Journal and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, addresses the mechanism of translocation by which transfer RNA and messenger RNA are moved stepwise through the ribosome.
The techniques of three-dimensional visualization he developed are also useful for studying a wide range of other dynamic processes in the cell, including transcription, DNA repair, splicing, protein export, protein degradation, and signaling.
Appointment to the rank of Distinguished Professor is conferred upon individuals who have achieved national or international prominence and a distinguished reputation within a chosen field.
This distinction is attained through significant contributions to the research literature or through artistic performance or achievement in the arts. The candidates' work must be of such character that the individuals' presence will elevate the standards of scholarship of colleagues both within and beyond these persons' academic fields.