Two University of Birmingham professors have been elected Fellows of the Royal Society, a fellowship of many of the world’s most distinguished scientists drawn from all areas of science, engineering and medicine.
Professor Yvonne Elsworth from the School of Physics and Astronomy, and Professor Bryan Turner, from the School of Cancer Sciences, were selected through a peer review process on the basis of their excellence in science.
Professor Elsworth is a world leader in solar and stellar physics. She pioneered seismic studies of the Sun, the field of helioseismology. Her ground-breaking contributions have transformed our fundamental understanding of the Sun, in ways that are of key importance for stellar structure and evolution, and for unlocking the secrets of the solar-cycle variations in the Sun's emissions.
Professor Andy Schofield, Head of the School of Physics and Astronomy, said: 'We are delighted at Professor Elsworth's election to the fellowship of the Royal Society. This is extremely well deserved and recognizes not only her pioneering contributions to solar and stellar physics, but also her leading service to the international scientific community and her strong support for women in science.'
Professor Turner is Professor of Experimental Genetics and Head of the Chromatin and Gene Expression Group in the Institute for Biomedical Research at the University of Birmingham. He is a leading figure in the rapidly developing field of epigenetics.
Professor David Adams, Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Head of the College of Medical and Dental Sciences at the University of Birmingham, said: 'Bryan Turner's election to the Fellowship of the Royal Society is richly deserved. He has contributed to our understanding of one of the most fundamental aspects of biology by developing new conceptual and experimental approaches to understanding how genes are regulated.
'He showed that modifications to histone proteins contribute to an epigenetic code that acts in concert with the DNA to determine how genes function. These seminal studies underpin the rapidly developing field of epigenetics and explain how, for instance, environmental factors can lead to changes in gene function and how these might be passed on to subsequent generations. His insights have also opened up a new field of drug development, leading to new treatments for cancer and many other diseases.'
Professor Elsworth and Professor Turner are among 47 Fellows elected to the Royal Society today.