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Noteworthy

Dartmouth Medical School Professor of Genetics Victor Ambros is among 72 scientists newly named to the National Academy of Sciences (NAS). Widely recognized for his groundbreaking studies of gene regulation, Ambros discovered a tiny new RNA molecule, surprising in its ultra-small size and unconventional activity. Today, these microRNAs are recognized to be an abundant and varied class that plays critical roles in the regulatory circuitry of the genome. In 2005, Ambros shared the 2005 Lewis S. Rosenstiel Award for Distinguished Work in Basic Medical Research, for "pioneering achievements in the discovery of gene silencing by double-stranded RNA."


Kenneth R. French, the Carl E. and Catherine M. Heidt Professor of Finance at the Tuck School of Business, is among the 203 new fellows and 24 new foreign honorary members who were elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (AAAS) on April 30. An expert in finance, French is best known for the Fama-French Three Factor Model, which he developed with colleague Eugene Fama of the University of Chicago. French is the 2007 president of the American Finance Association, a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, and an advisory editor of the Journal of Financial Economics.

Professor and Chair of Russian Lev Loseff's new biography of Russian poet Joseph Brodsky, Iosif Brodsky: Opyt literaturnoi biografii (Essay in literary biography), was featured on the cover of the May 2 edition of the Times Literary Supplement (London). Reviewer Andrew Kahn wrote, "Lev Loseff's new study is the best single literary biography of the writer yet to have appeared in any language ... Loseff gets us closer to his subject than any other account by integrating a reliable narrative of the facts (enhanced by useful chronologies at the back of the book) and a penetrating study of Brodsky's poetry and prose."


The book was published in Russian by Molodaya Gvardiya publishers, and the English-language version is currently being reviewed by Yale University Press. Loseff was a close friend of Brodsky's dating back to their young adult lives in the Soviet Union. Brodsky, who died in 1996, received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1987 and was poet laureate of the United States from 1991-1992. Loseff received a Guggenheim fellowship in 2000 to support the completion of an annotated edition of Brodsky's works. He teaches courses on 19th- and 20th-century Russian literature, Dostoevsky, and Tolstoy, and has been a member of the Dartmouth faculty since 1979.

Professor of Government Daryl Press's article, "Superiority Complex," is featured on the cover of the July issue of The Atlantic Monthly. Co-written with Keir Lieber, a professor of political science at the University of Notre Dame, the article delves into the potential repercussions arising from U.S. nuclear primacy over China—a state of affairs, they argue, that could actually promote a nuclear confrontation between the two powers, rather than deter it. According to Press and Lieber, the United States' vast nuclear counter force capability might ultimately trigger a nuclear arms race with China, or prompt Beijing to arm its nuclear arsenal if, for example, a conflict were to flare up over Taiwanese independence. Press, whose research areas include the economic effects of war, military technology, and balance of power in East Asia, has also worked as a consultant on military analysis projects for the U.S. Department of Defense.

Chelsea Wood '06 is lead author of "Parasites Alter Community Structure," a research paper published in the May 18 online early edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The paper argues that parasites are able to affect not only their hosts—altering growth, behavior, and health—but also their hosts' entire ecosystem.


Wood began the work for her undergraduate honors thesis under the direction of co-authors Kathryn Cottingham, associate professor of biological sciences, and James Byers, associate professor of zoology at the University of New Hampshire, with whom Wood conducted research in the summer of 2005 as part of the Research Experiences for Undergraduates program at Shoals Marine Laboratory. Wood and her collaborators found that the parasitic trematode Cryptocotyle lingua reduced the amount of algae eaten by infected Littorina littorea, marine snails also known as common periwinkles. Consequently, in areas where parasitism among snails was high, the amount of algae remaining in the environment for use by other species was reduced, demonstrating that parasites have important effects on the entire community of organisms—even those that never serve as a host.

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Last Updated: 5/30/08