Jeffrey Palmer, an associate professor of biology at Indiana University, Bloomington, has been awarded the David Starr Jordan Prize in biology for his contributions to molecular plant evolutionary biology. The international prize, given jointly every three years by Stanford University, Calif.; Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.; and Indiana University, is named after a late 19th- and early 20th-century evolutionary scientist, educator, and university president with ties to the three institutions. The prize recognizes scientists under the age of 40 whose contributions to evolution, ecology, or population or organismal biology are likely to redirect the principal focus of their fields. The prize consists of a $15,000 cash award and a commemorative medal.

Palmer, 35, has been studying the structure and evolution of the chloroplast genome since he was a doctoral candidate at Stanford. A chloroplast is the organelle in plant cells in which photosynthesis takes place. Palmer's work has provided insights into...

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