National Academy of Medicine

NAM Member David Julius Receives 2017 Canada Gairdner International Award for Groundbreaking Pain Research

April 06, 2017

Last week, the Gairdner Foundation announced Dr. David Julius as its 2017 recipient of the Canada Gairdner International Award, one of the most prestigious awards in biomedicine. The Canada Gairdner International Award recognizes outstanding biomedical scientists who have made original contributions to medicine with the goal of contributing through research to increased understanding of human biology and disease. Nominees should be individuals whose “seminal discoveries and major scientific contributions constitute an original and significant achievement in biomedical science.”

Dr. Julius has made seminal contributions to our understanding of the properties of receptors for the neurotransmitters serotonin and ATP. He has also studied the sensory modalities of pain, heat, and cold, where his discoveries have been critical to unraveling the molecular basis for thermal sensation.

According to the award citation, Dr. Julius received the award “for determining the molecular basis of somatosensation – how we sense heat, cold and pain.” Read the complete award citation here.

Dr. Julius has been a member of the National Academy of Medicine since 2012 and is currently professor and chair of the Department of Physiology at UC San Francisco. Watch a short video on his work >>