Frances Arnold is the Linus Pauling Professor of Chemical Engineering, Bioengineering, and Biochemistry for the California Institute of Technology. She earned a B.S. in mechanical and aerospace engineering from Princeton University and an M.S. and Ph.D in chemical engineering from the University of California at Berkeley. She earned a Nobel Prize in Chemistry for her discovery of methods of using directed evolution to facilitate enzyme development.
Some of the enzymes she has been able to develop with directed evolution are enzymes to produce environmentally friendly pharmaceuticals and renewable fuels. Other enzymes have evolved to provoke cyclopropanation and nitrene transfer reactions.
In addition to the Nobel Prize, she has also received the honor of being the first woman to be chosen for the National Academy of Medicine, the National Academy of Engineering, and the National Academy of Sciences. She won the Millenium Technology Prize in 2016 and the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Prize in Convergence Research in 2017.
Arnold was Inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2014 and became an International fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering in 2018. Most recently, Pope Francis made her a member of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, a scientific academy located in the Vatican City.
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