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Carol L. Prives, PhD, FAACR, Recognized with 2021 AACR-G.H.A. Clowes Award for Outstanding Basic Cancer Research

PHILADELPHIA – The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) will present Carol L. Prives, PhD, FAACR, with the 2021 AACR-G.H.A. Clowes Award for Outstanding Basic Cancer Research during the virtual AACR Annual Meeting 2021.

Prives, the Da Costa Professor of Biology in the Department of Biological Sciences at the Herbert and Florence Irving Institute for Cancer Dynamics at Columbia University, is being recognized for discovering that p53 is a DNA sequence-specific transcriptional activator and, when mutated, possesses novel oncogenic functions. She is also being recognized for her work involving the identification of stress signal-induced regulatory mechanisms of p53 and Mdm2 and for revealing novel pathways by which p53 functions to suppress cell growth and promote cell death.

The AACR-G.H.A. Clowes Award for Outstanding Basic Cancer Research was established between the AACR and Eli Lilly and Co. in 1961 to honor Dr. G.H.A. Clowes, who was a founding member of the AACR and a research director at Eli Lilly. The award is intended to recognize an individual who has made outstanding recent accomplishments in basic cancer research.

Throughout her career, Prives has made groundbreaking contributions to the understanding of the p53 tumor suppressor protein and its role in cancer etiology and development. Among other key findings, her research has provided important insights into how p53 regulates numerous cellular outcomes such as cell cycle, senescence, apoptosis, and metabolic processes; clarified the mechanism by which p53 is stabilized after DNA damage, which leads to upregulation of p53-controlled genes; and revealed how tumor-derived mutant forms of p53 function promote malignant cell transformation.

“Dr. Prives’ innovative, pioneering work in characterizing the behavior and function of the p53 tumor suppressor gene has contributed markedly to providing a solid foundation for a whole field of molecular cancer research,” said Margaret Foti, PhD, MD (hc), chief executive officer of the AACR. “The AACR is thrilled to recognize the contributions she has made to science for the benefit of cancer patients with this well-deserved honor.”

Prives, a member of the AACR since 1996, was elected as a Fellow of the AACR Academy in 2015, served as a member of the AACR Board of Directors from 2004-2007, and has been a member of the AACR Award for Lifetime Achievement in Cancer Research Committee (2017-2019; 2006-2007), the AACR Women in Cancer Research Council (2013), the AACR Basic Cancer Research Grants Scientific Review Committee (2012-2013), the AACR Laboratory Research Awards Committee (2011-2013), the AACR Nominating Committee (2001-2003), and was a cochair for the 2001 AACR Annual Meeting Program Committee. She was awarded the AACR-Women in Cancer Research Charlotte Friend Memorial Lectureship (2011). Prives has previously served on the editorial boards of several AACR journals, including Cancer Research (2000-2004) and Molecular Cancer Research (2002-2007). She later became an associate editor of Molecular Cancer Research (2007-2012). Prives has served on the editorial board of Cancer Discovery since 2011. She is also a member of the Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C) Canada Scientific Advisory Committee and served on the Review Committee of the SU2C Canada-Canadian Cancer Society Breast Cancer Dream Team. The AACR is the Scientific Partner of SU2C.

Prives’ remarkable achievements have earned her many awards and accolades, including the Outstanding Investigator Award (2018), the Paul Janssen Prize in Biotechnology and Medicine (2010), the NCI Rosalind E. Franklin Award for Women in Science (2009), the American Cancer Society Research Professorship (1998), and the NIH MERIT Award (1996). Prives is an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences (2008) and the Institute of Medicine (2005) and is an elected fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology (2001) and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2000).

Prives obtained her BSc and PhD in biochemistry from McGill University in 1962 and 1968, respectively. She earned her medical degree from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in 1971 and completed her postdoctoral fellowship at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel under the mentorship of Michel Revel, MD, PhD, in 1974. She has contributed to more than 250 peer-reviewed scientific publications. Prives’ award lecture will be available for on-demand viewing through the virtual AACR Annual Meeting 2021 platform beginning on May 17, 2021.