Gill Symposium honors two neuroscientists for work on the brain's role in regulating metabolism

  • Oct. 10, 2014


BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Neuroscientists from the Technische Universität München in Germany and the Janelia Research Campus at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute in Virginia will be honored next week at Indiana University Bloomington during the annual symposium of the Linda and Jack Gill Center for Biomolecular Science.

The focus of this year’s symposium, held Oct. 15 in Whittenberger Auditorium at the Indiana Memorial Union, is the role of the brain and central nervous system in eating behaviors, obesity, innate behaviors and metabolic disorders such as diabetes. The symposium is open to the public, but registration is required.

Matthias H. Tschöp

Arriving from Munich, Germany, to receive the 2014 Gill Distinguished Scientist Award is Matthias H. Tschöp, scientific director of the Helmholtz Diabetes Center and chair of the Division of Metabolic Diseases at the Technische Universität München. Tschöp will deliver a lecture titled “The Metabolic Syndrome: A Brain Disease?”

Tschöp has “repeatedly made breakthrough discoveries and translated them into transformative new ways to treat metabolic diseases,” said Richard DiMarchi, Standiford H. Cox Professor of Chemistry and Linda and Jack Gill Chair at IU. “These discoveries have real therapeutic potential and hold the promise for novel, personalized diabetes therapy.

“Work within the Tschöp laboratory has established gut-brain communication as essential for physiological regulation of metabolism,” DiMarchi said. “His is an influential voice explaining obesity and diabetes to the public.”

Scott Sternson

Receiving the 2014 Gill Transformative Investigator Award is neuroscientist and chemical biologist Scott Sternson, a group leader on the Janelia Research Campus at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

“Dr. Sternson uses genetics to combine optical and chemical tools to determine the function of specific neurons and circuits involved in behaviors such as eating,” said Ken Mackie, director and chair of the Gill Center. “Combining these techniques gives us a picture of the functioning nervous system that would not be possible with more conventional approaches.” Sternson will deliver a lecture titled “The Neurobiology of Need.”

In addition to the awardees, three other distinguished researchers will deliver lectures on the topic of metabolism, obesity and eating behaviors. The talks will conclude with a panel discussion among the speakers moderated by Jack Gill and Richard DiMarchi.

A full schedule of the day’s events is available online.

The Linda and Jack Gill Center for Biomolecular Science, part of the College of Arts and Sciences at IU Bloomington, was established by a generous gift from Linda and Jack Gill to advance the understanding of complex biological processes and to train the next generation of scientists in biomolecular measurements, especially in the field of neuroscience. Members and collaborators include faculty from IU's departments of biology, chemistry, molecular and cellular biochemistry, physics, psychological and brain sciences, and neuroscience, all in the College of Arts and Sciences; and the School of Medicine.

For more information about the Gill Symposium or the Gill Center, contact Misty Theodore at 812-856-1930 or

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Matthias H. Tschop

Matthias H. Tschop

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Scott Sternson

Scott Sternson

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Media Contacts

Misty Theodore

  • Gill Center
  • Office 812-856-1930