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Blackburn to Lead Salk

Nobel laureate Elizabeth Blackburn is to be the next president of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, ScienceInsider reports.

Blackburn, who won the 2009 Nobel Prize in Medicine along with Carol Greider and Jack Szostak for their work on telomeres, is to take over the helm of the Salk from William Brody at the beginning of the year. She is currently a professor in the biochemistry and biophysics department at the University of California, San Francisco.

Blackburn, ScienceInsider notes, will be the institute's first female president.

She tells ScienceInsider that she wants to use this new position as a platform to impart to the public the importance of basic research. She adds that the move feels like "a natural transition" and that she will still pursue basic research into her "ruling passion: understanding how life works."