Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

NAS Expels Member

The US National Academy of Sciences has ousted an astronomer from its membership rolls, the first time it has ejected a member, Buzzfeed News reports. It adds that Geoff Marcy, who resigned from the University of California, Berkeley, in 2015 and whose work focused on developing ways to find planets outside the Earth's solar system, has been accused of sexually harassing students.

As Buzzfeed News notes, his expulsion comes following changes to the NAS bylaws. In 2019, NAS voted to approve an amendment allowing the expulsion of members for violating its code of conduct. That, in turn, came after Inder Verma, then at the Salk Institute and editor-in-chief of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, was accused of sexual harassment. While Verma resigned from the Salk and as editor-in-chief of PNAS, the academy said at the time it had no mechanism to remove him from its membership.

According to Nature News, Marcy's membership in NAS was revoked as of May 24.

Verma's membership as well as that of Francisco Ayala, formerly at the University of California, Irvine, are also under review for possible expulsion, Buzzfeed News adds.

The Scan

Positive Framing of Genetic Studies Can Spark Mistrust Among Underrepresented Groups

Researchers in Human Genetics and Genomics Advances report that how researchers describe genomic studies may alienate potential participants.

Small Study of Gene Editing to Treat Sickle Cell Disease

In a Novartis-sponsored study in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers found that a CRISPR-Cas9-based treatment targeting promoters of genes encoding fetal hemoglobin could reduce disease symptoms.

Gut Microbiome Changes Appear in Infants Before They Develop Eczema, Study Finds

Researchers report in mSystems that infants experienced an enrichment in Clostridium sensu stricto 1 and Finegoldia and a depletion of Bacteroides before developing eczema.

Acute Myeloid Leukemia Treatment Specificity Enhanced With Stem Cell Editing

A study in Nature suggests epitope editing in donor stem cells prior to bone marrow transplants can stave off toxicity when targeting acute myeloid leukemia with immunotherapy.