The Honors and Awards

Topics: Amino acid, Psychiatry, Serotonin Pages: 85 (27742 words) Published: December 31, 2012
Solomon H. Snyder
Washington, D.C.
December 26, 1938

Georgetown College, Washington, D.C. (1955–1958)
Georgetown Medical School, Washington, D.C. M.D. Cum Laude

Research Associate, NIH, (1963–1965)
Resident, Psychiatry, Johns Hopkins (1965–1968)
Assistant (1966–1968), Associate (1968–1970), Full (1970– ) Professor, Johns Hopkins, Pharmacology and Psychiatry
Distinguished Service Professor of Neuroscience Pharmacology and Psychiatry, Johns Hopkins (1980– )
Director, Department of Neuroscience, Johns Hopkins

Honorary Doctorates:
Northwestern University (1981)
Georgetown University (1986)
Ben Gurion University, Israel (1990)
Albany Medical College (1998)
Technion University, Israel (2002)
Mount Sinai Medical School (2004)
University of Maryland (2006)
Albert Lasker Award (1978)
Wolf Prize (1983)
Bower Award (1992)
National Medal of Science (2005)
Albany Prize in Medicine (2007)
Honorific Societies:
American Academy of Arts and Sciences (1979)
National Academy of Sciences USA (1980)
Institute of Medicine (1988)
American Philosophical Society (1992)
Solomon Snyder identified receptors for opiates and neurotransmitters and elucidated mechanisms of drug action. He characterized messenger systems including IP3 receptors and inositol pyrophosphates. He identified novel neurotransmitters including nitric oxide, carbon monoxide and D-serine.

Solomon H. Snyder


ike most other people, I am the product of my parents. Hence, a brief review of their lives may provide insight into my own. Similarly, the lives of my siblings may be informative. My dad was born in 1911 in Baltimore, the fifth of seven children. His father moved to Washington when he was 2 years old to open a small grocery store a block away from the butcher shop operated by Al Jolson’s father. Like his father and most of his siblings, Dad was musical and for many years was a semiprofessional saxophonist in dance bands, though his greatest love was classical music. Graduating high school in 1929, he meandered among clerical jobs at Federal agencies in the depths of the depression. Soon after marrying Mom in 1935, Dad became the 10th employee of a tiny government agency which emerged as the National Security Agency (NSA). Throughout World War II he led a team of a few hundred cryptanalysts addressing various Japanese codes. At the end of the war modern computers were invented and Dad was assigned to “find out if these machines might help the code breaking effort.” Within a couple of years he led an effort that made NSA the largest computer installation on earth. He became so enamored with computer programming, that when I was 10 years old he taught me to program computers in “machine language” which incorporated the binary number system. Though not technically a scientist, Dad greatly admired science and often spoke with me about science as the highest activity of mankind. However, Dad was very easy going and never ordered or even strongly urged that any of we five kids pursue particular avenues of personal development.

Mom was complex. Born in New Haven, Connecticut, she came to Washington during the depression to find work with the Federal Government. She had a decided entrepreneurial flair. Thus, when my sister Elaine and I were 4 and 2 years old, respectively, and Washington was flooded with lonely young government workers arriving from all over the country, she decided to “do something.” With Dad’s assistance she organized “The Carefree Circle,” a social club. Within a year the organization overflowed our tiny house and attracted the attention of the city’s newspapers, the Washington Post and the Washington Star. The Carefree Circle spawned a semi-professional sandlot baseball team. My mother knew nothing about baseball but appointed herself “manager.” Her main contribution was to introduce a female pitcher despite the fact that there had...
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