Andrew Harris awarded the Ross Hallett Memorial Graduate Scholarship in Biophysics

Posted on Friday, December 11th, 2015


Barbara Hallett (right) presented Andrew Harris (left) with the Ross Hallett Memorial Graduate Scholarship.
Barbara Hallett (right) presented Andrew Harris (left)
with the Ross Hallett Memorial Graduate Scholarship.

Congratulations to Andrew Harris on being awarded the Ross Hallet Memorial Graduate Scholarship in Biophysics. Andrew was selected based on his academic achievements and ability in biophysics research as demonstrated through publications, presentations, and the mastery of his research area.

Andrew Harris obtained his BSc degree from the Physics program at the University of Guelph in the spring of 2013.  After graduating, Andrew returned to Guelph in the spring of 2014 and continued into an MSc program with Professor Leonid Brown. His research was focused on spectroscopic investigation of novel light-driven proton pump from soil bacteria, which has not been studied by any other group previously.  His work uncovered a novel mechanism of proton transfer in the cytoplasmic part of the protein, the result which is of interest to such diverse areas as physical chemistry and microbial evolution.  Additionally, the novel proton pump may have an applied value for the emerging field of optogenetics, being used for selective suppression of neurons with light. These findings were recently published in Biochimica Biophysica Acta (BBA) – Bioenergetics and presented at the 1st Biophysical Society of Canada meeting held in June 2015 at Waterloo, where Andrew’s poster won first prize.   The following September Andrew was the 2nd place winner at the Phys Phest competition at the University of Guelph.

About the Scholarship

The Ross Hallett Memorial Scholarship in Biophysics was established in memory of Professor Ross Hallett to honour his contributions to research in biophysics, as well as the academic life of the Department of Physics, the College of Physical and Engineering Science, and the University of Guelph.

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