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COLLEGE STATION --

Dr. A. Ian Scott, Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Texas A&M University, has been selected by the Texas Academy of Science as the Distinguished Texas Scientist of the Year for 2002, announced John T. Sieben, vice president of the academy.

"Dr. Scott's productive career makes him an outstanding choice for this award," Sieben said. "Some highly distinguished scientists have won this award in the past, so he is in very good company."

According to Sieben, each year the Texas Academy of Science honors a Texas scientist for contributions to both science and the state. Nominations are solicited in the fall from the Academy's membership, which includes professors, leaders in state government, and other people who are connected with science.

"Our members really have a broad view of who's doing what in science," Sieben said.

Once all nominations are in, the Academy formulates an internal committee to review them, then select a winner who best typifies contributions to research and science across the state.

"Dr. Scott certainly does that," Sieben added.

A world leader in organic and natural product chemistry, Scott's insights and achievements in the design of experiments to uncover the mechanisms leading to vitamin B12, plant alkaloids and antibiotics, and in the burgeoning area of biological nuclear magnetic resonance have resulted in discoveries which are unparalleled in this field, since they have revolutionized both the practice and theory of biosynthetic investigation in a fundamental way.

"Dr. Scott is an ideal selection for the Distinguished Texas Scientist Award," said Emile A. Schweikert, professor and head of the Department of Chemistry. "His penetrating insight and experimental discoveries made during his 25 years at Texas A&M, particularly in the last decade, have changed the field of natural product biosynthesis from an often inconclusive series of feeding studies to a rigorous discipline."

Scott ranks as only the third Texas A&M professor since 1979 to earn the Academy's highest honor. His award will be presented at the Academy's 105th annual meeting, scheduled for Feb. 28 through March 2, 2002, in Laredo.

"I am honored that the Texas Academy of Science has selected me for this award," Scott said. "In doing so, they recognize the hard work and devotion of generations of my students and postdoctorals at Texas A&M University."

Scott has won several awards this year. Earlier this month, he was appointed to The Robert A. Welch Chair in Chemistry and as the D.H.R. Barton Professor of Chemistry in recognition of his achievements in research and his ability to challenge his students and colleagues.

Incorporated in 1929, the Texas Academy of Science is affiliated with the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Contact: Shana K. Hutchins, (979) 862-1237, via e-mail shutchins@tamu.edu, or Dr. A. Ian Scott, (979) 845-3243, via e-mail scott@mail.chem.tamu.edu.

Hutchins Shana

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