Harvard’s Xiaowei Zhuang Honored by the Boehringer Ingelheim Foundation for Her Work in Cell and Neurobiology

Xiaowei Zhuang, the David B. Arnold Jr. Professor of Science at Harvard University, has won the 2022 Heinrich Wieland Prize of the Boehringer Ingelheim Foundation for making seminal discoveries in cell and neurobiology. This international award honors outstanding research on biologically active molecules and systems in the fields of chemistry, biochemistry, and physiology, as well as their clinical importance. The prize includes a €100,000 award.

Dr. Zhuangs’ invention, STORM — short for STochastic Optical Reconstruction Microscopy — is one of the first imaging technologies to overcome the physical boundary (diffraction limit) of resolution in light microscopy. It thus enables us to observe single proteins performing their job within the crowded environment of intact, living cells.

“Her discoveries enable us to better understand how cells and organisms function in health and what goes wrong in disease,” says Christoph Boehringer, chairman of the executive committee of the Boehringer Ingelheim Foundation. “We are also sure that the fantastic tools Zhuang has given the research community will enable many more exciting discoveries, by her and other scientists worldwide.”

Professor Zhuang joined the faculty at Harvard University in 2001. She is a graduate of the University of Science and Technology of China and earned a Ph.D. in physics at the University of California, Berkeley.

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