NRI scientist wins $20,000 award | india | Hindustan Times
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NRI scientist wins $20,000 award

Merchant, professor at Univ of California, is awarded US national award for biochem discoveries.

india Updated: Feb 09, 2006 17:22 IST

The Indian-American scientist Sabeeha Merchant has won the US National Academy of Sciences' Gilbert Morgan Smith Medal for her research on green algae.

Merchant, who is professor of biochemistry at the University of California, Los Angeles, was chosen for the $20,000 award for her pioneering discoveries in the assembly of metalloenzymes and regulated biogenesis of major complexes of the photosynthetic apparatus in green algae, the Academy said.

The research on algeaalgea explores how living organisms manage to cope with little or no metals which are necessary for vital biological functions.

The award is given every three years for excellence in published research on marine or freshwater algae.

Merchant is one of the 15 scientists selected by the Academy for the awards. The awards will be presented on April 23 at a ceremony in Washington DC, during the Academy's 143rd annual meeting.

Born in Mumbai, Merchant attended JB Petit High School till she was 15. When her parents immigrated to Wisconsin, Merchant joined the University of Wisconsin Madison and graduated with a BS in Molecular Biology. She later did her Ph.D in Biochemistry from the university.