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Rebecka and Arie Belldegrun Distinguished Director of Vagelos Program in Life Sciences and Management: Philip A. Rea

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January 25, 2011, Volume 57, No. 19

 

Rea

Professor of Biology Philip A. Rea has been named the inaugural Rebecka and Arie Belldegrun Distinguished Director of the Vagelos Program in Life Sciences and Management. A member of the Plant Science Institute, Dr. Rea describes his approach to primary research as that of a “basic biologist,” seeking general biological principles, particularly at the cellular and molecular levels. Through the application of this approach, Dr. Rea and his group have been able to make major contributions toward understanding a broad range of transport and related phenomena, with special emphasis on alternate energy sources and cellular detoxification processes. Dr. Rea’s secondary research focuses on the communication of science to the educated lay reader through case studies that highlight the difficult transition from discovery in the laboratory to success in the market and/or toward the expansion of humanitarian efforts.

Dr. Rea received his doctorate in plant biochemistry from the University of Oxford, conducting postdoctoral research there, as well as at McGill University and the University of York. Shortly before joining the Penn faculty in 1990 he was a group leader at the Institute for Arable Crops Research, Rothamsted, England. A National Academies Education Fellow in the Life Sciences and recipient of the President’s Medal of the Society for Experimental Biology for his fundamental research on transport across plant membranes, he has published more than 100 scientific papers.

Dr. Rea has twice received the biology department’s Award for Excellence in Teaching and recently received of the Ira H. Abrams Memorial Award for Distinguished Teaching, SAS’s highest teaching honor, in recognition of his abilities as a dynamic and compelling lecturer who encourages students to think as scientists. He has served as faculty co-director of the Vagelos Program in Life Sciences and Management since its inception in 2005.

The Rebecka and Arie Belldegrun Distinguished Directorship of the Vagelos Program in Life Sciences and Management was established by Rebecka and Arie Belldegrun. A urological oncologist at the University of California, Los Angeles, Arie Belldegrun serves on the Penn Parents Leadership Committee and the advisory board of the Life Sciences and Management program. Rebecka Belldegrun is trained as an ophthalmologist and serves as an executive with a Los Angeles-based investment management and consulting firm.

 

Almanac - January 25, 2011, Volume 57, No. 19