News archive 2001
International mental health prize17 Oct 2001, PR 28/01
It has been announced by the United States’ Institute of Medicine that Professor Michael Rutter of the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London, is to be one of two recipients of this year’s prestigious Sarnat International Prize in Mental Health.
Michael Rutter is Professor of Development Psychopathology at the Social, Genetic, and Developmental Psychiatry Research Centre, Institute of Psychiatry. He has pioneered the integration of psychosocial factors, genetics, and development in understanding normal and pathological psychology. His efforts are seen to have elucidated the interplay of nature and nurture in psychological development, advanced the understanding of psychosocial risk and protective factors in childhood mental disorders, and contributed significantly to the understanding of autism, antisocial behaviour, and the later effects of severe childhood deprivation. Professor Rutter’s interdisciplinary research and novel clinical perspectives have fostered new approaches to developmental and child psychiatry.
He shares the prize with Solomon H Snyder, Professor of Neuroscience, Pharmacology & Psychiatry, Department of Neuroscience, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore. Professor Snyder has been at the forefront of molecular neuroscience as it pertains to mental illness; his discoveries have led to the improved understanding and treatment of many psychiatric disorders.
The Institute of Medicine, through its Board on Neuroscience and Behavioral Health, has awarded the Sarnat Prize since 1992 to individuals, groups, or organizations that have demonstrated outstanding achievement in improving mental health. The prize recognizes - without regard for professional discipline or nationality - achievements in basic science, clinical application, and public policy that lead to progress in the understanding, etiology, prevention, treatment, or cure of mental disorders, or to the promotion of mental health.
The prize itself consists of a medal and 0,000 for each recipient, and was presented on Tuesday 16 October 2001 at the Institute's annual meeting. The award is supported by income from an endowment created by Rhoda and Bernard Sarnat of Los Angeles. Rhoda Sarnat is a licensed clinical social worker, and Bernard Sarnat is a plastic and reconstructive surgeon and researcher. Their concern about the destructive effects of mental illness inspired them to establish the award.
Nominations for potential recipients are solicited every year from Institute members, deans of medical schools, and mental health professionals. Nominations for recipients of the 2002 Sarnat Prize may be sent to the Board on Neuroscience and Behavioral Health at the address below.
Notes to editors
King's College London
King's is one of the two oldest and largest colleges of the University of London with some 12,200 undergraduate students and over 4,500 postgraduates in ten schools of study. The College is among the country's top four higher education institutions for the number of highest-rated subject-areas for research quality. It is in the top group of five universities for research earnings and has an annual turnover of £285 million and research income from grants and contracts in excess of £80 million (1999-2000).
The Institute of Medicine is a private, non-profit organization that provides health policy advice under a congressional charter granted to the National Academy of Sciences.
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