Northern Illinois University

NIU Office of Public Affairs

Robert Hoey (left) and James Horn
Robert Hoey (left) and James Hor

To obtain a print-quality JPEG of this photo, contact the Office of Public Affairs at (815) 753-1681 or e-mail

News Release

Contact: Tom Parisi, NIU Office of Public Affairs
(815) 753-3635

September 5, 2007

Chemistry and biochemistry student
wins $1,000 prize for research

DeKalb, Ill. — Northern Illinois University graduate student Robert J. Hoey recently won an award for outstanding research at the 2007 Current Trends in Microcalorimetry Conference in Boston.

The award included a trophy and a prize of $1,000.

Hoey, a 2003 graduate of Downers Grove South High School, presented a poster describing his research to an audience of international scientists from both academia and industry.

The research poster was co-authored by Hoey’s adviser, Professor James R. Horn in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry.

The conference focused on applications of microcalorimetry in the life sciences. Microcalorimetry is a technique that measures the heat of chemical reactions, providing valuable information for the discovery, design and development of new drugs and biotherapeutics.

Hoey and Horn investigated the molecular basis of recognition of an in vitro matured antibody and used microcalorimetry to reveal important insights into the mechanism of antibody binding.

Most of the research presented was performedby Hoey while he was an undergraduate honors capstone student in Horn’s lab. The judges of the poster competition were some of the top biophysical scientists in academia.