Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

Fotis Kafatos Dies

Fotis Kafatos, a molecular biologist who served as the founding president of the European Research Council, has died, the Associated Press reports. He was 77.

As the AP notes, Kafatos, who was a professor at Harvard University from 1969 through 1994, was also known for his work into malaria and for sequencing the genome of the mosquito that spreads it.

In 2007, the European Research Council, which funds scientific projects, was founded as part of the European Commission, and the AP says that Kafatos considered its creation the highlight of his career. He stepped down as its president in 2010.

"He was a world-class biologist and his contribution to the successful setting up of the ERC has been decisive," the council says in a statement. "With great commitment and stamina he fought with heart and soul for having this new organization that scientists had been demanding for a long time."

The AP adds that Kafatos became fed up with the associated bureaucratic rules, which he said slowed the pace of research, and it notes that he once told Nature that "[w]e continuously had to spend energy, time and effort on busting bureaucracy roadblocks that kept appearing in our way."

The Scan

Polygenic Risk Score to Predict Preeclampsia, Gestational Hypertension in Pregnant Women

Researchers in Nature Medicine provide new mechanistic insights into the development of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, which may help develop therapeutics.

New Oral Nanomedicine Strategy Targets Gut-Brain Axis to Treat IBD

A new paper in Science Advances describes a platform to design polyphenol-armored oral medicines that are effective at treating inflammatory bowel disease.

Phylogenetic Data Enables New Floristic Map

Researchers in Nature Communications use angiosperm phylogenetic data to refine the floristic regions of the world.

Machine Learning Helps ID Molecular Mechanisms of Pancreatic Islet Beta Cell Subtypes in Type 2 Diabetes

The approach helps overcome limitations of previous studies that had investigated the molecular mechanisms of pancreatic islet beta cells, the authors write in their Nature Genetics paper.