Award Name : National Medal of Science
Year of Award : 2008
Award for : Biology
Location : Hinsdale, Illinois, United States
Elaine Fuchs is an American cell biologist, famous for her work on the biology and molecular mechanisms of mammalian skin and skin diseases, and has led the modernization of dermatology. She was born on May 5, 1950 in Hinsdale, Illinois, United States. Dr. Fuchs received her B.S. in chemistry from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, in 1972 and her Ph.D. in biochemistry in 1977 from Princeton University. Elaine Fuchs is interested in understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying the ability of skin stem cells to produce the epidermis and its appendages, including hair follicles and sweat and oil glands. She utilizes mammalian epithelial stem cell culture and mouse genetics as model systems. Her studies bridge an understanding of the normal biology of skin stem cells with an understanding of how these processes are transiently altered during wound healing and how they go awry in human diseases of the skin, including genetic diseases, skin cancers, and proinflammatory disorders. The National Medal of Science awarded by President Obama in 2009, and the Albany Prize in Medicine and Biomedical Research in 2011.