Phil Dawson
Phil Dawson. Credit: Scripps Research

For his work supporting the development of peptide science, Phil Dawson, PhD, professor in the Department of Chemistry at Scripps Research, has been awarded the 2024 Cathay Award from the Chinese Peptide Society (CPS)—the highest honor bestowed by the society.

The CPS brings together researchers from around the world to promote international communication, collaboration and innovative application of peptides. The conference will highlight lectures, speeches, presentations and poster sessions on peptide chemistry and biology, drug discovery, and peptide materials.

Dawson has focused on developing exquisitely chemoselective selective approaches to advance chemical access to proteins, nucleic acids and their conjugates. The goal of his research is to introduce non-coded amino acids and other chemical groups into biological macromolecules to reveal new insights into the molecules of life, and to aid in the discovery and manufacture of these molecules as therapeutics.

Dawson received an AB in Chemistry from Washington University in St. Louis, and PhD from Scripps Research. After pursuing postdoctoral work at Caltech, he returned to Scripps Research as an assistant professor. He has published over 200 papers and has been honored with the Max Bergmann Kreis gold medal, du Vigneaud Award from the American Peptide Society, RSC MedImmune Protein and Peptide Science Award, the Akabori Memorial Medal from the Japanese Peptide Society and will receive the ACS Cope Scholar Award in September 2024.

Dawson has served as president of the American Peptide Society, on the board of directors for FASEB, and cochaired the 22nd American Peptide Symposium and the GRC on Biology and Chemistry of Peptides.

Dawson accepted the Cathay Award—sponsored by the H.H. Liu Education Foundation—during the 18th Chinese Peptide Symposium (CPS) in Hong Kong from June 30 to July 2, 2024.