Drew M. Noden, Emeritus Professor of Embryology and Animal Development at Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine, was awarded the 2018 Society for Developmental Biology Viktor Hamburger Outstanding Educator Prize for his outstanding contributions to developmental biology education.
Noden was an early proponent of problem-based learning and was instrumental in transforming the curriculum from lecture-based courses to case-based courses at Cornell’s Veterinary College. He used his broad knowledge and passion for developmental biology to make a dry and static domestic animal embryology course into an engaging and interactive course for first year veterinary and graduate students.
In 1983, Noden published The Embryology of Domestic Animals which became a staple of veterinary schools throughout the US. In it he used his skills as a scientific illustrator to convey complicated aspects of vertebrate development through simple, easily accessible diagrams. Many of Noden’s summary sketches of craniofacial development are standard in embryology textbooks today.
Noden spent his career studying the mechanisms underlying craniofacial development. He mapped the embryonic origins of the muscles, blood vessels, bones, and nerves that make up the head and face. Using quail and chick embryos, he analyzed the properties of cranial neural crest cells and how they interact with nearby cell populations to give rise to specialized tissues.
Noden was awarded the 2014 Henry Gray/Lippincott Williams Wilkins Scientific Achievement Award by the American Association of Anatomists. He will present his Viktor Hamburger Outstanding Educator Prize lecture at the SDB 77th Annual Meeting in Portland, Oregon on Monday, July 23, 2018.