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The Outstanding Scientific Achievement Award honors one to three candidates for a single research contribution. The award is based upon novel and seminal discoveries of a basic, clinical or theoretical nature. The contribution can consist of several findings, but the findings must be parts of a single, coherent line of research. Any collection of disparate findings will not be recognized. The award is presented each year at SLEEP, the Annual Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies.
To nominate someone, download the SRS Outstanding Scientific Achievement Award Nomination Form. Complete the form and email it to the SRS Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org no later than November 1, annually.
Download Scientific Achievement Award Nomination Form
Niels C. Rattenborg, PhD
Niels C. Rattenborg, PhD, has been a member of the Sleep Research Society (SRS) since 1996 and is the leader of the Avian Sleep Group at the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology (MPIO) in Seewiesen, Germany. Dr. Rattenborg received a doctorate from Indiana State University in 1999. In 2000, he earned the Young Investigator Award from the SRS for his work on the anti-predation function of avian unihemispheric sleep. Following a postdoc in the department of psychiatry at the University of Wisconsin–Madison,
Dr. Rattenborg started his independent research group in Seewiesen in 2005 where he now holds a permanent position. Throughout his career, Dr. Rattenborg has aimed to gain insight into the functions of sleep through examining how birds adjust their sleep in response to ecological challenges demanding sustained wakefulness.
As a favor to my father, Jean-Paul Spire and Richard Rosenberg introduced me to the sleeping brain when I was only 17. In St. Louis, Kristyna Hartse and later James Walsh and Paula Schweitzer broadened my understanding of sleep and its disorders.
During my dissertation at Indiana State University, Charles Amlaner and Steven Lima’s mentoring helped me to get my ducks in a row. I am also indebted to Ruth Benca (University of Wisconsin) for providing the opportunity to spread my wings in her lab as a post-doc. I thank Martin Wikelski of the MPIO for his enthusiastic collaborative spirit and Bart Kempenaers (MPIO) for inviting me to the Alaskan tundra to study his sleepless polygynous sandpipers.
Alexei Vyssotski’s (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology and University of Zurich) technological innovations enabled our EEG-based research to take wing in the wild. I am also grateful to the members of the MPIO and my group, notably Dolores Martinez-Gonzalez and PhD students, John Lesku and Bryson Voirin, who played essential roles in the studies contributing to this award. The SRS and its members also provided valuable support throughout my development from a young investigator. Finally, I thank my family for their encouragement during my winding career and for sharing in my excitement over the discoveries made along the way.
2016 - Luis de Lecea, PhD
2015 - Arthur J. Spielman, PhD
2014 - David Holtzman, MD
2013 - Amita Sehgal, PhD
2012 - Joseph Takahashi, PhD
2011 - Terry B. Young, PhD
2010 - Mark Mahowald, MD; Carlos Schenck, MD
2009 - David B. Rye, MD, PhD; Juliane Winkelmann, MD
2008 - Robert Y. Moore, MD, PhD; Friedrich K. Stephen, PhD; Irving Zucker, PhD
2007 - Eve Van Cauter, PhD
2006 - Masashi Yanagisawa, MD, PhD; Emmaneul Mignot, MD, PhD