from Arkansas State University

For Release: Jan. 23, 2004
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Dr. Carole Cramer named executive
director of Ark. Biosciences Institute

Dr. Susan Allen, vice chancellor for research and academic affairs, has announced Dr. Carole L. Cramer of Blacksburg, Va., as the first executive director of the Arkansas Biosciences Institute (ABI) at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro.

Cramer, a professor and research scientist at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Blacksburg, Dr. Carole Cramerholds a Ph.D. in biological science from the University of California at Irvine with undergraduate studies at the University of California at Berkeley.

“We’ve been looking for over a year for a director of the ABI to help us build our effort,” said Allen. “We’re very excited that Dr. Cramer has agreed to join us. We couldn’t be more pleased to have her here at ASU.

“Dr. Cramer is a very well-known plant molecular biologist,” Dr. Allen said. “Her work was on the Institute for Scientific Information’s most-cited list in 2002. She was appointed by Secretary of Agriculture Ann Veneman to the USDA’s Advisory Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture. Well-known in the biotechnology field, she has several patents, has founded two companies, and is well published.”

An internationally recognized leader in the area of “plant-made pharmaceuticals,” her current research involves the use of tobacco plants to produce vaccines for dysentery and for the biodefense area.

Cramer, who has worked at the interface of agriculture and medical sciences for the last decade, said the opportunity at ASU is an excellent match for her background.

“It is a remarkable opportunity to energize this area of research, to build a world-class institute at ASU, and make a real difference in the university and the state.”

The focus of ABI and its scientists will be to use collaborative research efforts through agricultural and medical research to improve the health of Arkansans. (The ABI was created as a major research component of the Tobacco Settlement Proceeds Act of 2000.)

The ABI building on the ASU campus is scheduled to open by late summer or early fall, well ahead of schedule, according to Cramer. Plans for the ABI include ultimately hiring 14 faculty members.

“This is incredibly rewarding. What Arkansas did with its tobacco settlement money is truly unique. It is to be applauded. They’ve devoted significant resources to a research endeavor with a number of complimentary goals in biomedical agriculture,” she said.

  Dr. Cramer will be transitioning to Arkansas with her family over the next few months.

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