Yale’s Stephen G. Waxman received the prestigious Julius Axelrod Prize Nov. 3 at the Society for Neuroscience’s annual meeting in San Diego, Calif.
The $25,000 prize, supported by the Eli Lilly and Company Foundation, recognizes exceptional achievements in neuropharmacology or a related field, and exemplary efforts in mentoring young scientists.
Waxman, the Bridget Flaherty Professor of Neurology and professor of neurobiology, and pharmacology at Yale School of Medicine, has made pivotal discoveries that explain pain after nerve injury. Waxman’s research has defined the ion channel architecture of nerve fibers and demonstrated its importance for axonal conduction. He participated in an international coalition that identified sodium channel mutations as causes of peripheral neuropathy. An entirely new class of medications for neuropathic pain, based largely on his work, is now in Phase II clinical trials.
Julius Axelrod was a longtime member of Society for Neuroscience and shared the 1970 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his discovery of the actions of neurotransmitters in regulating the metabolism of the nervous system. His well-known work on brain chemistry led to current treatments for depression and anxiety disorders and played a key role in the discovery of the pain-relieving properties of acetaminophen.