His research focuses on the structure, function and genetics of transport proteins, which act as gatekeepers for the body by carrying essential molecules in and out of cells. In 2003, his research team identified a new protein that senses changes in glucose, the blood sugar that fuels body function. The UCLA discovery could lead to the development of new drugs to control diabetes and obesity.
In his 38-year tenure at UCLA, Wright has mentored more than 40 postdoctoral fellows and graduate students. During his career, he received the Senator Jacob K. Javits Neuroscience Investigator Award from the National Institutes of Health from 1985 to 1992, and was named the Walter B. Cannon Distinguished Lecturer by the American Physiological Society in 1989, the G.W. Harris Lecturer by the British Physiological Society in 1990 and a Fellow of the Biophysical Society in 2005.
He has served on the editorial boards for several physiology journals, consults for the National Institutes of Health, and is a scientific advisor to the Eli and Edythe L. Broad Medical Foundation in Los Angeles.
The Royal Society is the world's oldest scientific academy in continuous existence, and has been at the forefront of research since its foundation in 1660. Each year, the British society applies a rigorous peer review process to elect a maximum of 44 new fellows and six foreign members who are citizens of the United Kingdom, other Commonwealth countries or Ireland.
The lifetime honour pays tribute to the society's most distinguished members who have demonstrated excellence in research and made a substantial contribution to advancing understanding in their field of science, medicine, engineering or mathematics.
MEDICA.de; Source: University of California