NEW YORK, April 10, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Rob Knight was named winner of a Creative Promise Prize in Biomedical Science for his groundbreaking research on microbial communities and the development of computational tools that honed the analysis of microbial data. Dr. Knight is a professor of pediatrics and computer science & engineering at the University of California, San Diego. His computational and experimental approaches have led to rapid and cost-effective microbial DNA sequencing methods and data analysis platforms that help to understand similarities among microbial communities based on their evolutionary relationships. Dr. Knight has used informatics to show how maps of distinct microbes thriving in different parts of the human body change over time, how human-associated microbes can influence metabolic health, and how microbes can be used as timekeepers to help establish the time of death in forensic examinations. He has also set out to catalog the diverse kinds of microbes found in ecosystems across the globe in an ambitious, collaborative effort called the Earth Microbiome Project. Dr. Knight's book Follow Your Gut was published by TED Books in April 2015. Rob Knight was born in Dunedin, New Zealand.
About the Vilcek Foundation:
The Vilcek Foundation was established in 2000 by Jan and Marica Vilcek, immigrants from the former Czechoslovakia. The mission of the foundation, to honor the contributions of foreign-born scholars and artists living in the United States, was inspired by the couple's careers in biomedical science and art history, respectively, as well as their personal experiences and appreciation for the opportunities they received as newcomers to this country. The foundation awards annual prizes to immigrant biomedical scientists and artists and sponsors cultural programs such as the Hawaii International Film Festival. To learn more, please visit Vilcek.org.
About the Vilcek Prizes:
The Vilcek Foundation believes that immigrant contributions are invaluable to advancing the American arts, sciences, and culture. Now in their tenth year, the Vilcek Foundation Prizes pay tribute to and spotlight individuals whose accomplishments embody this belief. The Vilcek Prize in Biomedical Science honors a researcher with records of major achievement in her or his field. The winner of the prize is awarded a $100,000 unrestricted cash prize and an unique trophy designed by Austrian-born designer Stefan Sagmeister. The Vilcek Prizes for Creative Promises in Biomedical Science, established seven years ago, commend young immigrant scientists who have demonstrated outstanding achievement in the early stages of their careers. The winners each receive a $50,000 unrestricted cash prize and a certificate designed by Stefan Sagmeister. All prizewinners will be honored at a ceremony in New York City in April 2015.
Video - http://youtu.be/FYiJs313wkM
SOURCE The Vilcek Foundation