VCU researcher Paul Fisher honored as “scientist of the year” by Governor Terry McAuliffe
Newly elected Governor Terry McAuliffe presented Paul B. Fisher, M.Ph., Ph.D., the Virginia’s Outstanding Scientist of 2014 award at the Science Museum of Virginia’s General Assembly Reception on Thursday, January 16. Fisher was one of two scientists who received this year’s award.
“I am honored to recognize Virginia’s top science talents for 2014,” said Governor McAuliffe at the award ceremony. “These individuals are improving our quality of life through their stellar accomplishments.”
Fisher was recognized for his pioneering work in the field of molecular biology and the translation of his research from “bench to bedside.” The governor cited his research on the mechanisms involved in cancer development and progression in order to define improved methods for cancer prevention, detection and therapy. Fisher’s studies involving the mda-7/IL-24 gene, which was originally cloned in his lab, were exalted as an example of research that could ultimately impact the lives of countless cancer patients.
“It is a great privilege to receive this award,” said Fisher, professor and chair of the Department of Human and Molecular Genetics at the Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) School of Medicine, director of the VCU Institute of Molecular Medicine and Thelma Newmeyer Corman Chair in Cancer Research and co-leader of the Cancer Molecular Genetics research program at VCU Massey Cancer Center. “I would like to thank my former and current students, postdoctoral researchers and colleagues at VCU and at institutions around the country for the key roles they have played in moving research from concept to reality, as well as my family for being a source of unconditional support and inspiration throughout my career.”
Fisher is the fourth Massey researcher to receive the Virginia’s Outstanding Scientist of the Year award. Past recipients include Gordon D. Ginder, M.D., director of VCU Massey Cancer Center; Steven Grant, M.D., Shirley Carter Olsson and Sture Gordon Olsson Chair in Oncology Research, associate director for translational research, program co-leader of Developmental Therapeutics and Cancer Cell Signaling research member at Massey; and Sarah Spiegel, Ph.D., Mann T. and Sara D. Lowry Chair in Oncology, co-leader of the Cancer Cell Signaling program at Massey and chair of the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Department at the VCU School of Medicine.