Journal issue honors late professor

May 15, 2001

A special issue of the Journal of Theoretical Biology will honor University of California, Davis, mathematician Joel Keizer, who died in 1999.

Keizer was director of the Institute of Theoretical Dynamics at UC Davis from its inception in 1986 until his death. The institute brings together scientists from various disciplines who use mathematics and computers to solve problems in biology, medicine and engineering.

Trained as a chemist, Keizer became interested in mathematical problems in biology. He was particularly interested in changes in electrical potential in cells, and how the flow of calcium in and out of cells controls cell activity. At the time of his death, he was working on a textbook of mathematical biology, which is being completed by his colleagues.

"Joel was a master at bringing together people from different areas of the physical and biological sciences," said Angela Cheer, current director of the institute.

"Joel's example of a balanced life, pursuing both scientific and non-scientific interests with gusto, helped many students to deal with the pressures of starting out in science," said UC Davis mathematical biologist Alan Hastings, co-editor of the special issue.

Contributors to the memorial issue include colleagues from UC Davis as well as scientists from the National Institutes of Health, New York University, Oregon Health Sciences University, Virginia Tech and the Free University of Brussels, Belgium.
The special issue will be published May 21 by Academic Press.

Media contacts: Alan Hastings, Environmental Science and Policy, 530-752-8116,; Angela Cheer, Institute of Theoretical Dynamics, 530-752-1912,; Andy Fell, News Service, 530-752-4533,

University of California - Davis

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