Alum Toni Antalis ’81 takes reins at biochemistry and molecular biology society

Former Owl’s two-year term as president began July 1

Rice alumna Toni Antalis ’81 became president of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology July 1.

Toni Antalis

Toni Antalis

Antalis is a professor of physiology and director of Ph.D. training in molecular medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore and associate director for training and education at the University of Maryland Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center in Baltimore.

Antalis, who earned her doctorate in biochemistry from Rice, discovered membrane-anchored proteases in 2001 while working at the Queensland Institute of Medical Research in Brisbane, Australia.

Antalis told ASBMB Today she will face a number of challenges in her two-year term, including transitioning the society’s journals to open access and advocating for continued support from funding agencies like the National Institutes of Health amid the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Another challenge we face these days is the importance of not politicizing science,” she said. “Scientific societies play an important role in trying to prevent politicization of science funding and of scientific results.”

About Jade Boyd

Jade Boyd is science editor and associate director of news and media relations in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.