Virtual Issue: Women in biological chemistry

Virtual Issue: Women in BC

The 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution, adopted 100 years ago this month, states that “The rights of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged...on account of sex.” This addition, decades in the making, was simultaneously profound as an initial recognition of women's rights and far too limited as an effort toward equality for women, a struggle that continues today. Similarly, this virtual issue simultaneously celebrates progress made in regards to the participation of women in science, in the form of a subset of the Editors' Picks papers published in JBC in the last three years with corresponding authors who are women, and serves as a reminder that we have much work still to do to fully include women, and particularly women of color, in the scientific endeavor. While the author versions of the research papers are always freely available, as with all JBC content, the redacted versions of these articles have also been made free. We hope you enjoy the collection, and encourage you to spread the word about the accomplishments of these fantastic scientists as well as those from women in your faculty, facility and field.

The cover art shows the gene clusters responsible for the biosynthesis of the bacterial polysaccharide Pel, including the newly characterized epimerase PelX, as reported by Howell and colleagues. The arrows also represent the continuum of progress already made and yet to be made in the equal treatment of women in science.

Assembled by Catherine Goodman and Karen Fleming; published August 2020

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