Please join us in congratulating Dr. Vance Lemmon who received a Lifetime Achievement Award in Neural Regeneration at the virtual 2021 International Neural Regeneration Symposium in Nantong, China. The research recognized by the award was produced by an 18-year partnership with Professor John Bixby at the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, developing high throughput phenotypic screening methods with primary neurons. Recently, with their colleague, Hassan Ali, they have found a small molecule kinase inhibitor that is remarkably effective at promoting axon growth in the injured central nervous system. The five prior recipients of this Lifetime Achievement Award include a Nobel Prize winner, a member of the Royal Society, a member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and The Miami Project’s own Professor Mary Bunge. Congratulations Vance on this important and well deserved recognition and award.
Dr. Lemmon, as part of the Lem-Bix Lab, specialize in high content screening and functional genomics of the nervous system. The mass of information available from the various genome projects, together with sophisticated image analysis and laboratory automation has created an opportunity to revolutionize the study of the nervous system. Our laboratory, which is co-directed by John Bixby, has developed methods to test hundreds of genes or compounds in hundreds of thousands of neurons each week and obtain quantitative information about cell morphology and gene expression. This “high throughput” capability allows us to tackle questions about development and regeneration using Systems Biology approaches. The biological problem we have focused since launching our laboratory at The Miami Project has been to uncover genes and compounds that promote or prevent axon regeneration.