Joanna Fowler awarded National Medal of Science

November 2, 2009

Joanna Fowler, Ph.D., a major contributor to brain research and a pioneer in molecular imaging, has been awarded the National Medal of Science, the nation’s highest award for lifetime achievement in science.

Joanna Fowler, Ph.D., a major contributor to brain research and a pioneer in molecular imaging, has been awarded the National Medal of Science, the nation’s highest award for lifetime achievement in science.

A senior researcher at the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, NY, Fowler was a member of the research team that in 1976 first synthesized fluorine-18 fluorodeoxyglucose (F-18 FDG), the workhorse radiotracer for PET/CT imaging. Her groundbreaking research on neurotransmitters using PET led to a better understanding of addiction and to insights into the cause and possible treatment of Parkinson’s disease.

Fowler and eight other researchers were presented medals at a White House ceremony Oct. 7.