The Fellow Award recognizes current members of the SIVB who have been active members for at least 10 years. A Fellow has made outstanding contributions in their area of specialization or discipline to include research, teaching, and administration in public, government, academic, or private industry activities. Information on additional award winners will be provided in future issues of the In Vitro Report.
Amy Wang was awarded the Invertebrate Section’s Fellow Award during the 2006 Meeting. Amy joined the SIVB in 1995 and has since been an active member, serving our scientific society in many areas and with great enthusiasm. She has held numerous positions, such as Scientific Advisor, Awards Committee Chair, and President and Vice President of the Invertebrate Section. She was a member of the Program Committee from 1997 to 2004. Furthermore, Amy has played an important part in the fundraising efforts of the Invertebrate Section. Additionally, in 2004, Amy convened the 11th International Conference on Invertebrate Cell and Tissue Culture, with Dr. Guy Smagghe as co-organizer. Working with Dr. Robert Granados and Dr. Karl Maramorosch, Amy co-chaired the symposium “Molecular Engineering and Biology of Invertebrate Cell Cultures: A Tribute to Dr. Thomas Grace and Professor Shangyin Gao”, which honored the co-founders of the field of insect cell culture. Above and beyond her role as conference convener, Amy also coordinated efforts to nominate Dr. Grace for a SIVB Lifetime Achievement Award and made it possible for Dr. Grace to attend our meeting by working out special arrangements with his former employer to cover his travel costs. Additionally, as Dr. Gao had passed away, Amy made an extra effort to find and visit with his family in order to personally present them with a special award from the Invertebrate Section. All in all, the International Conference was a wonderful success due in large part to Amy’s hard work. From a research perspective, Amy was one of the first scientists to establish a cell line from insect nerve tissues and has also been involved with developing unique in vitro assays for insecticide screening and drug discovery programs. Currently, Amy is a Senior Scientist at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), with her main research focus being on metabolic diseases.
Mr. Caputo was awarded the Invertebrate Section’s Fellow Award during the 2006 Meeting. He has been a member of SIVB for over 20 years. Since 2000, he has helped to lead the Invertebrate Section in his capacity as Section Secretary. Guido has spent his time constantly upgrading the Invertebrate Section membership database, soliciting input from members over numerous issues of importance, and keeping the members informed of all upcoming events. Guido has also been involved in the organization of and/or participation in a number of Invertebrate Section sessions, such as the workshop on “Techniques for the Development of New Insect Cell Lines” at the 2005 In Vitro Biology Meeting in Baltimore; the symposium on “Delivery of Genes to Mammalian and Insect Cells with Baculoviruses” at the 2003 Congress on In Vitro Biology in Portland; and numerous interactive poster sessions or contributed paper sessions. From a research perspective, Mr. Caputo has proven himself to be an expert insect tissue culture biologist by the difficult task of establishing over 125 insect cell lines from numerous insect Orders, including Lepidoptera, Hymenoptera, Coleoptera and Hemiptera, and from a wide variety of insect tissues, such as embryos, hemocytes, midgut, neonate and ovarian tissues of origin. His work has also involved the development of mass production schemes of a wide range of homologous/heterologous viruses for use as part of an integrated, environmentally acceptable, and economically viable, pest management control program. These, and other, research accomplishments have had important implications for the promotion of sustainable agriculture within Canada and internationally.
Guido Caputo had this to say after receiving the SIVB Invertebrate Section’s Fellow Award:
“I would like to thank those that nominated me for this most prestigious award and knowing past recipients, I am humbled to be here tonight to accept it. A special thank you to my past supervisor, mentor and close friend, Dr. Sardar S. Sohi who over a span of almost 30 years taught me invertebrate tissue culture. As employees of Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Forest Service Sector, our lab developed well over 100 cell lines in our search for biological controls of forest pests. Insect cell lines originally developed for the replication of Baculoviruses have now found prominence in many non forest related fields. Our lab however will continue to develop and maintain insect cell lines to be used as viable insect control agents. Thank you very much.”
Information provided by Cynthia L. Goodman and Guido Caputo