April 1, 1935 – October 23, 2011
Agnes Henschen-Edman, professor emerita of the Department of Molecular Biology & Biochemistry, died of natural causes in her University Hills home Oct. 23, 2011. She was a pioneer in the characterization of the blood coagulation protein fibrinogen and was the first person to report its amino acid sequence. Henschen-Edman earned her medical degree and doctorate at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm in 1964 and worked for many years with her husband, Pehr Edman, at the Max-Planck Institute in Germany. She came to UCI in 1989, where she extended her research interests beyond fibrinogen to include protein structure, protein function, and post-translational modifications. She was instrumental in establishing UCI’s first sequencing facility and provided invaluable advice and assistance to numerous other researchers. She was a wonderful faculty colleague, and an important role model and mentor to our students and postdocs. We will miss her warm and delightful personality, which has enriched our community for many years.
A brilliant scientist, wonderful friend, and loving mother to all. I will always remember you and your passion for science. Thank you for your contributions to the world. You will be missed.
PJ Simpson-Haidaris, PhD
I am saddened to hear of Agnes’s passing. She was dear to me in many ways—first and foremost as a mentor and colleague in the fibrinogen world. I learned about fibrinogen structure and function from an individual who never lost her passion and love for a single molecule in all the time I knew her (circa 1987). She was generous in spirit, practical in nature and a pioneer for women in science. I also felt a sisterhood with her because she shared the same name as my mother. Agnes will be missed by many of her friends and colleagues.