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AAAS selects K-State distinguished professor as 2020 fellow

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Published: Nov. 28, 2020 at 1:15 PM CST
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MANHATTAN, Kan. (WIBW) - The American Association for the Advancement of Science has chosen a Kansas State University distinguished professor as its 2020 fellow.

Kansas State University says the world’s largest scientific society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, has chosen Phillip E. Klebba, a distinguished professor of biochemistry and molecular biophysics at the school, as one of its 2020 fellows.

According to K-State, Klebba is one of 489 fellows that were selected in 2020 by the AAAS. It said he was chosen for his contributions to the understanding of the membrane transport mechanisms of bacteria relevant to their practical applications in human and animal health.

“I’m thrilled, appreciative and gratified to think that others find our research contributions worthy of their attention,” Klebba said. “In truth, this recognition is attributable to the hard work and many insightful experiments performed by members of my laboratory over the years.”

K-State said election as an AAAS fellow is a lifetime honor for association members that is given to them by their peers. It said the fellowship program recognizes those whose efforts toward advancing science applications are deemed scientifically or socially distinguished.

According to the university, the fellows were announced in the AAAS News and Notes section of the Nov. 27 issue of Science. It said new fellows will be presented with an official certificate and a pin to commemorate their election.

K-State said Klebba joins 23 other current and emeritus Kansas State University faculty members that are also fellows of the association.

“Dr. Klebba has a long-standing record of publications from his research,” said Peter Dorhout, vice president for research. “The papers from his laboratory routinely devised new techniques, including immunological, molecular biological biochemical, and biophysical methods, that placed him at the forefront of basic biochemical research. It was a pleasure for me to recommend Phil for this recognition.”

According to K-State, Klebba’s research focuses on the development of fluorescent nanosensors for biophysical analyses of membrane transport in living cells, leading to the understanding of the mechanisms of active iron transport through the cell envelopes of pathogenic bacteria and the use of this knowledge to discover novel antibiotics against bacterial infectious disease.

K-State said Klebba joined its faculty in 2012. It said his research and collaborative projects have garnered over $10.5 million in research funding since 1986 from organizations like the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation. It said he has over 85 publications.

According to K-State, for decades Klebba served as a referee for funding agencies and scientific journals. It said he is a section editor for the International Journal of Molecular Sciences, was a managing editor for Frontiers in Bioscience and served as an editorial board member for the Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology, Biomedical Research International and Advances in Biological Chemistry.

K-State said in 1993, Klebba was a CNRS at Institut Pasteur in Paris and spend 2002 to 2003 as a Fulbright Scholar at Institut Necker Enfents Malades in Paris. It said he remains involved with the Fulbright Scholar Program of the U.S. State Department and is a biochemistry specialist for its Council for Exchange of International Scholars. It said in 2001, he served as an international professor of the American Society for Microbiology at the University of Sao Paulo in Brazil. It said from 2011-2012, he was appointed as a visiting professor of physiology in the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles.

According to the university, Klebba is a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Society for Microbiology, the American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and the Society of General Physiologists. It said some of his career achievements include receiving the 1981 Evelyn Neizer Post-Doctoral Research Award from Stanford University, Phillipe Foundation International Scholar awards in 1993 and 2002 and a Burroughs-Wellcome Research Scholar Award in 2011 at the University of California, Los Angeles.

K-State said Klebba earned his bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Notre Dame, his doctorate in biochemistry from the University of California, Berekely, and performed postdoctoral research at Stanford University and at the University of California, Berkeley.

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