January 13, 2010

University of Kentucky Professor Joseph Chappell was elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

The association seeks to advance science around the world. As the world's largest general scientific society, it serves 10 million people and 262 affiliated societies and academies of sciences.

Fellows are nominated by their peers and elected by the association's council based on their distinguished scientific contributions. Chappell, a plant physiologist in the UK College of Agriculture, is one of 531 newly elected Fellows from the association's 24 scientific sections.

"This is much-deserved recognition for an outstanding member of our faculty," said Scott Smith, dean of the college. "Dr. Chappell has been an exceptionally creative and productive faculty leader for his full career in the College of Agriculture."

Chappell received the honor based on his research about terpene, a chemical compound found in plants. This compound can do a variety of things including attract and deter insects, defend against plant parasites, flavor food, provide fragrance and is used in drugs to combat human diseases. Chappell's researches the biology of terpenes and their influence on plant growth and development with the ultimate goal of using this information to advance agricultural, medicinal and industrial technologies to benefit humans.

"There is indeed something very special about being recognized by my colleagues across the entire nation with this selection," he said. "I'm extremely humbled that they would consider my research contributions significant enough to rank amongst those of the august body of the AAAS Fellows."

The association will honor Chappell along with the entire group of new Fellows during its Fellow's Forum at its annual meeting Feb. 20 in San Diego.

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