Giulia Palermo Wins the 2020 Corwin Hansch Award

Author: Holly Ober
August 2, 2021

Giulia Palermo, an assistant professor of bioengineering at UC Riverside, has won the 2020 Corwin Hansch Award, given by the Hansch-Fujita Foundation each year to a scholar under the age of 40 for significant contributions to the field of computational drug design.

Giulia Palermo
Giulia Palermo

Palermo, who leads a computational bioengineering group interested in biophysical studies of gene editing tools, will receive the award at the Virtual Award Session of the annual Gordon Research Conferences on Computer-Aided Drug Design. The award is named in honor of Corwin Hansch, a pioneer in computational drug discovery and late honorary chair of the QSAR and Chemoinformatics Society. 

RNA art by Giulia Palermo
"Group II intron ribozyme," painting by Giulia Palermo.

Giulia Palermo is a native of Italy where she earned her PhD in 2013 from the Italian Institute of Technology, working in the group of Marco De Vivo. She has been a post-doc in the group of Prof. Ursula Rothlisberger at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, where she worked on ab-initio methods. In 2016, she was awarded a Swiss National Science Foundation post-doctoral fellowship to join the group of J. Andrew McCammon at the University of California, San Diego. At UCSD, she earned the experience of innovative multiscale methods that extend the limits of molecular simulations, enabling the study increasingly realistic biological systems obtained through cryo-EM.

Palermo also interprets some of her work through painting. One of her recent pieces, depicting a group II intron ribozyme, won the 2021 inaugural RNA Society Arts and Music competition.