Prof. Linda Jen-Jacobson, PhD

Linda Jen-Jacobson

Title: Professor Emerita
Company: University of Pittsburgh
Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States

Linda Jen-Jacobson, Professor Emerita at University of Pittsburgh, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Scientists for dedication, achievements, and leadership in biochemistry.

Academics have been a part of Dr. Jen-Jacobson’s life for as long as she can remember. Her family was heavily involved in the university environment; her father was the first person to discover the iron sphere and her mother was one of the first young women to attend university in China. She and her siblings were encouraged to develop their own professional legacies, leading her to become interested in research and independent research. Dr. Jen-Jacobson initially decided to pursue pure research with a focus on biological problems, but ended up gravitating to more fundamental problems like biophysics. She steadily built her expertise around sequence-specific recognition of DNA by proteins, structure-function relationships in proteins, and the conformational dynamics of proteins and DNA. Today, she is best known for developing the principals of protein-DNA recognition and dynamics.

Over the years, Dr. Jen-Jacobson contributed her findings to numerous professional journals and conventions, as well as to the young minds at the University of Pittsburgh. She served the school as a principal investigator from 1981 to 1991, an associate professor from 1991 to 1997 and a professor from 1998 to 2011. She accepted the distinguished title of professor emerita that year, and has maintained it ever since. Although Dr. Jen-Jacobson is no longer active in the classroom, she remains involved as a manuscript reviewer and as a member of prominent organizations like the American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, the Protein Society, and the Biophysical Society.

To prepare for her endeavors, Dr. Jen-Jacobson obtained a Bachelor of Arts in chemistry from Harvard University in 1962 and both a Master of Science in biochemistry and a PhD in biochemistry from the University of Illinois in 1965 and 1967, respectively. She then submitted proposals for grants and funding from the National Science Foundation so she would have the ability to direct and develop her own research. This gave her a lot of freedom with her work and started her on her path to academic achievement.

Dr. Jen-Jacobson’s efforts and successes did not go unnoticed. She was asked to be the keynote speaker at the Gibbs Conference on Biothermodynamics in 2009 and at the Wesleyan University Molecular Biophysics Retreat in 2001, and was the recipient of the NIH Merit Award and the Chancellor’s Distinguished Research Award in the Senior Category. Her accomplishments were highlighted in Who’s Who in America and Who’s Who of American Women. When Dr. Jen-Jacobson has free time, she enjoys cooking different cultural dishes to expand her horizons.

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