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Professor Susan Forsburg (Biological Sciences)

Professor Susan Forsburg (Biological Sciences)

Susan Forsburg is a Professor of Biological Sciences (Molecular and Computational Biology) in the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts, and Sciences. Her research examines the links between DNA replication, cell cycle, and chromosome dynamics in a model genetic system: the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe.  Her lab uses a combination of classical genetics and state of the art imaging methods to explore mechanisms of genome stablity.

Professor Forsburg is an elected fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the  American Academy of Microbiology, the California Academy of Sciences, and the Association of Women in Science (AWIS). She has served as a member of the Women in Cell Biology Committee of the American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB).  In 1996, she received the ASCB-WICB Junior Career Recognition award for women in science, and in 2011, the Roche Diagnostics Alice M Evans Award from the American Society for Microbiology.

 Forsburg has over 20 years experience as a PI, leading a team of postdocs, PhD students, technicians, and undergraduates. She has a strong record of continuous independent funding from NIH, NSF, the American Cancer Society, and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and over 80 publications in the literature.

Complementing her research, Forsburg serves on numerous research-oriented university committees at USC. She has served as a member of the USC Women in Science and Engineering (WiSE) Advisory Board, as head of the USC graduate program in Molecular Biology, and now directs a new progressive MS degree.

In external service, Forsburg is a senior editor of the journal G3: Genes, Genomes, and Genetics, and is active in several professional societies. She has served as a member of the Public Affairs Advisory Committee of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, currently serves on the NIH study section, and recently rotated off the American Cancer Society council for extramural grants.

Before coming to USC in 2004, Professor Forsburg received her PhD in Biology (Genetics) from MIT and her AB from UC Berkeley with a double major in English and Molecular Biology.  She was a Post-Doctoral Fellow at Oxford University, where she was a junior research fellow at Linacre College.  She  was an Assistant and Associate Professor at the Salk Institute for Biological Sciences in La Jolla for 11 years, prior to moving to USC as part of the Dornsife Senior Faculty Hiring Initiative in 2004. She was promoted to Full Professor at USC in 2006.

Honors/ Awards:

  • 1995 Visiting Professor, Institute of Molecular Biology, Univ. Copenhagen, Denmark
  • 1996 American Society for Cell Biology WICB Junior Career Recognition Award
  • 1997-2002 Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Scholar Award
  • 2002 Stohlman Scholar, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
  • 2004 elected Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
  • 2006 Mellon Mentoring Award Certificate of Recognition, USC
  • 2006 Top 9 American Women in Cancer Research, Pink Magazine
  • 2007 elected Fellow, Association of Women in Science (AWIS)
  • 2008-2011 Fellow, USC Center for Excellence in Research
  • 2011 Roche Diagnostics Alice C Evans Award, American Society for MIcrobiology
  • 2013 elected member, Phi Kappa Phi honor society
  • 2013 elected fellow, California Academy of Sciences
  • 2014 elected fellow, American Academy of MIcrobiology



Professor Forsburg’s Women in Biology Page: