Press Release

September 10, 2011

NamesforLife founder is awarded the van Niel International Prize

George Garrity, professor in the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, was recently awarded the Van Niel International Prize for Studies in Bacterial Systematics. He was recognized for the contribution he has made to the field of bacterial systematics. He will receive the award at the 13th International Congress of Bacteriology and Applied Microbiology Sept. 6-10 in Japan.

The Senate of The University of Queensland, on the recommendation of a panel of experts of the International Committee on Systematics of Prokaryotes, is pleased to present the van Niel International Prize for Studies in Bacterial Systematics for the triennium 2009-2011 to Professor George M. Garrity in recognition of his contribution made to the field of bacterial systematics. The award, established in 1986 by Professor V. B. D. Skerman of The University of Queensland, honours the contribution of scholarship in the field of microbiology by Professor Cornelis Bernardus van Niel.

[George’s] work centres on the use of bioinformatics and computational biology in prokaryote systematics, the development of algorithms for the classification and identification of microorganisms and microbial products, nomenclature/annotation, data visualization and knowledge mining.

He was instrumental in developing the technology for the NamesforLife project, established to resolve the ambiguity between nomenclature and biological objects and concepts, providing a new approach to the retrieval of information from diverse sources, based upon the use of nomenclature to link content. NamesforLife models the evolution of changes in biological nomenclature and terminology, resolves instances of synonymy and homonymy, and provides mapping to the underlying concepts that can be viewed in a temporal context. Using Digital Object Identifiers, names or terms are linked to permanent unique identifiers, can provide a direct path through the literature, and link to a variety of databases and other contextually relevant services. The project has also developed a Firefox add-on that can identify taxonomic names in online articles and provide up-to-date nomenclatural and taxonomic information.

Busse, H.-J., Labeda, D.P., Oren, A. and Tindall, B.J. The van Niel International Prize for Studies in Bacterial Systematics, awarded by The University of Queensland Awarded in 2011 to George M. Garrity; 2011. International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology 61:2328-2329.

[permalink] Posted September 10, 2011.

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