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2023 AAAS Martin and Rose Wachtel Cancer Research Award

AAAS and Science Translational Medicine invite applications for the 2023 AAAS Martin and Rose Wachtel Cancer Research Award. This annual award, funded by an endowment established through a generous bequest from Martin L. Wachtel, honors early-career investigators who have performed outstanding work in the field of cancer research. The award winner(s) will be invited to deliver a public lecture on their research and receive a cash award of $25,000. The award-winning Essay(s) will be published in Science Translational Medicine.


  • Each entrant must be a researcher in the field of cancer, with an advanced degree (Ph.D., M.D., D.V.M.) received within the last 10 years. If the applicant has more than one advanced degree, the 10 years are counted from the date that all degrees were completed in the case of uninterrupted training, such as a dual degree M.D./ Ph.D. program. However, if the applicant completed one degree, left to do research or other activities (including residency or fellowship), and then returned to study for an additional degree, the 10 years are counted from the time of completion of the first advanced degree. Residency, fellowship, or postdoctoral training do not extend the timeline.
  • The research must have been performed during the previous 10 years.
  • The entrant must have performed or personally directed the work described in the Essay.
  • Employees and affiliates of AAAS and their relatives are not eligible for the prize.
  • Applicants who did not win are welcome to reapply as long as they are otherwise eligible for the award. Previous winners and honorable mentions are not eligible to apply again.

Procedures for Entry

Entry packages must include the following materials, written in English

  • A letter of application written by the entrant or by a nominator describing the entrant's significant contributions to cancer research. The letter should explain how the candidate's research promises to make a lasting impact on the cancer field.
  • An Essay written by the nominee describing his or her research project and explaining how it advances our understanding of cancer. The Essay must not exceed 1500 words (not including references) and should have a short title, a one-line abstract, no more than 10 references and one figure. The research described in the Essay must be in the field of cancer, and the applicant must have performed or directed all of the work. The research must have been performed within the last 10 years.
  • A one-page letter of recommendation from the entrant's postdoctoral advisor, supervisor, or other senior colleague who is familiar with the entrant's work.
  • A copy of the entrant's curriculum vitae.
  • Copies of two of the entrant's papers that are most relevant to the Essay.

The deadline for entry is February 1, 2023

Please note: If your contact information changes after submission, you must inform us at wachtelprize@aaas.org.

Criteria and Selection

The editors of Science Translational Medicine are responsible for the initial evaluation of the Essays. The top Essays are forwarded to the judging panel, which is composed of prominent international researchers in the field of cancer. The applicants are rated on two characteristics: scientific quality and significance of their research, and the clarity and style of the Essay.

Questions / Inquiries

Send inquiries by email to wachtelprize@aaas.org.