Professor and HHMI Investigator Rob Martienssen has been awarded the 2019 Martin Gibbs Medal for his innovative work in the field of plant biology. The award is presented by the American Society of Plant Biology (ASPB) to “an individual who has pioneered advances that have served to establish new directions of investigation in the plant sciences.”
Martienssen’s current work focuses on investigating the epigenetic mechanisms of plants, and understanding their role in gene regulation and inheritance. He is also an expert on transposable elements, or “jumping genes,” studying how they regulate other genes and are in turn regulated during plant development.
“It is an honor to be recognized with the Gibbs Medal,” said Martienssen. “Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory has a long history with the American Society of Plant Biology, with Charles Shull [who did plant biology work here in the early 1900s] having been part of the ASPB’s founding body.”
The Gibbs Medal is presented biennially to plant researchers, and is named in honor of acclaimed biochemist Martin Gibbs. Martienssen is also the winner of the 2018 Barbara McClintock Prize for Plant Genetics and Genome Studies.