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19 UTSW researchers make ‘most highly cited’ list; awards for Mendell, Schmid

Mendell awarded MSK cancer research prize

Dr. Joshua Mendell
Dr. Joshua Mendell

Dr. Joshua Mendell, Professor and Vice Chair in the Department of Molecular Biology, has been awarded the 2019 Memorial Sloan Kettering Paul Marks Prize for Cancer Research.

“It is a great honor to follow in the footsteps of many of my scientific role models who also received this award. I would like to thank all of my outstanding trainees, past and present, whose exceptional work is being recognized with this honor,” says Dr. Mendell, one of three investigators nationwide to receive the award.

In addition to receiving a medal and $50,000, Dr. Mendell, also a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, spoke about his research on Dec. 5 at a Memorial Sloan Kettering scientific symposium. Since it was first presented in 2001, the biennial Paul Marks Prize for Cancer Research has recognized 31 scientists and awarded more than $1 million in prize money.

Dr. Mendell directs a lab that studies noncoding RNAs, which lack the instructions for making proteins. Over the last decade, Dr. Mendell’s team has found that a specific class of noncoding RNAs called microRNAs are reprogrammed in cancer cells to favor tumor growth.         

Schmid receives Stanford lifetime achievement award

Dr. Sandra Schmid
Dr. Sandra Schmid

Dr. Sandra Schmid, Chair and Professor of Cell Biology, has received the Stanford Medicine Alumni Association’s Arthur Kornberg and Paul Berg Lifetime Achievement Award in Biomedical Sciences.

“I could not be more honored to be associated, in even this small way, with the legacy of Arthur Kornberg and Paul Berg: the epitome of walking-the-talk scientists and leaders,” says Dr. Schmid, who also holds the Cecil H. Green Distinguished Chair in Cellular and Molecular Biology.

Dr. Schmid is internationally recognized for her research on endocytosis – how cells take in nutrients and other molecules. She has mapped out precise steps in this process and identified the molecular players and their roles.

She studies the molecular mechanisms and regulation underlying clathrin-mediated endocytosis, the major pathway for uptake into the cell and a critical regulator of cell-cell and cell-environment communication. A pioneer in defining the GTPase dynamin as a catalyst of membrane fission, she recently discovered isoform-specific functions of dynamin that are activated in cancer cells.

In addition to her research, Dr. Schmid has led the scientific community as co-founding Editor of Traffic, Editor-in-Chief of Molecular Biology of the Cell, and former President of the American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB). She was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2015, and her numerous honors include ASCB/Women in Cell Biology junior and senior career recognition awards, the American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology’s William C. Rose Award, and the Biophysical Society’s Sir Bernard Katz Award.

Dr. Schmid received her Ph.D. in biochemistry from Stanford in 1985. 

Most highly cited list includes 19 UTSW researchers

The 2019 list of the world’s most influential scientific minds includes 19 current UT Southwestern researchers.

In its annual list, the Web of Science Group names the most highly cited researchers – those whose work was most often referenced by other scientific papers published from 2008 through 2018 in 21 fields.

Current UT Southwestern faculty members and researchers named to the list include a Breakthrough Prize recipient and six Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigators.

UT Southwestern’s top-cited researchers, based on the category in which they were selected, include:

Clinical Medicine



Molecular Biology and Genetics

Psychiatry and Psychology