Robert Campbell awarded Rutherford Memorial Medal

Royal Society of Canada honour recognizes outstanding research in chemistry.


A chemistry professor at the University of Alberta has earned a prize named after one of Canada’s great scientists.

The Royal Society of Canada announced Sept. 15 that Robert Campbell is this year’s recipient of the Rutherford Memorial Medal in Chemistry.

Campbell, who joined the U of A in 2004, won the medal for his lab’s work using protein engineering to invent new tools for imaging dynamic biochemical events in live cells and tissues. Campbell is an international authority on the development and application of fluorescent proteins for live cell imaging. The innovative imaging tools he has developed have been embraced by hundreds of cell biology and neuroscience research groups from around the world. These tools have advanced our understanding of intracellular signalling dynamics and are now enabling the visualization of neural activity in model organisms.

Since beginning his independent career, Campbell has built an internationally renowned research program. He has also been published in high-profile journals such as Science and Nature Methods and been recognized with a number of major awards.

The Rutherford Memorial Medals were established in 1980 by the Royal Society of Canada in memory of Lord Rutherford of Nelson, a great scientist and a leader in nuclear research. The medals are awarded for outstanding research in any branch of physics and chemistry to researchers who have made meaningful contributions relatively early in their career.