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Beth Sorensen
Office of Communications


Reed College will open the 1996-97 academic year with convocation ceremonies at 4:15 p.m. on Thursday, September 12 in the Aubrey R. Watzek Sports Center on the Reed campus. The Vollum Award for Distinguished Accomplishment in Science and Technology will be given to Nobel Prize recipient Edwin G. Krebs, M.D., a pioneer in unraveling the complex pathways by which hormones and drugs regulate cellular functions. Krebs is professor emeritus of pharmacology and biochemistry at the University of Washington and emeritus investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

The program also includes an address by Allen Neuringer, professor of psychology, on "Behavioral Variability and Beveled Siding" and remarks from Reed's president, Steven Koblik.

The Vollum Award was created in 1975 as a tribute to the late C. Howard Vollum, a 1936 Reed graduate and lifelong friend of the college. Winners are selected for the perseverance, fresh approach to problems and solutions, and creative imagination that characterized Howard Vollum's career. The award winner receives $2,000 and a silver medal encased in a walnut triptych. The Vollum Award was endowed in 1975 by a grant from the Millicent Foundation, now a part of the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust. Past winners include Steve Jobs in 1991, Harold Lonsdale in 1988, Bill Gates in 1984, and M. Lowell Edwards and Albert Starr in 1981.

Edwin G. Krebs, M.D.
The discoveries of Dr. Edwin G. Krebs have influenced medical research on many diseases, providing clues to the underlying mechanisms of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and other conditions.

In 1955, Dr. Krebs and Edmond Fischer, working in the biochemistry department at the University of Washington, discovered the process of protein phosphorylation as the final chemical reaction in the hormonal pathway that regulates metabolism of glycogen, a complex carbohydrate used as an energy storage molecule in cells. This discovery led to their being honored with the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine in 1992.

Dr. Krebs and his associates also discovered, in 1968, an important new enzyme, cyclic AMP-dependent protein kinase, a member of a family of enzymes that have been found to be crucial in the action of an increasing number of hormones and drugs, as well as in regulation of cell growth, development, and malignant formation.

As second chairman of the University of Washington's pharmacology department, Dr. Krebs led a major expansion of research in molecular pharmacology. He also served as professor and chairman of the biological chemistry department at the University of California, Davis, from 1968 to 1977.

A native of Lansing, Iowa, Dr. Krebs received an A.B. in chemistry in 1940 at the University of Illinois at Urbana and an M.D. in 1943 at the University of Washington School of Medicine, with a residency in internal medicine in 1945 at Barnes Hospital in St. Louis. He was a research fellow in biological chemistry in 1948 at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. He joined the faculty of the University of Washington in 1948.