Condolences for Wylie Vale

Wylie was an inspiration to us all. He was certainly one of the central figures in my early research career conducting clinical studies using CRH as a tool to probe pituitary-adrenal responsiveness in clinical populations. That work would not have been possible had it not been for Wylie's efforts to identify the amino acid sequence of what he always called "CRF," even after it made the transition from a releasing "factor" to an actual bonafide "hormone." He and his group did this the "hard way," the old-fashioned way, long before the advent of molecular genetic techniques for deducing peptide/protein sequences from DNA or RNA sequences. He will be missed. My condolences and best wishes to his family.

~ Mitchel A. Kling, M.D. (January 6, 2012, 6:14PM)




Wylie was the noble "prince" of modern endocrinology. Not only was he a brilliantly curious scientist who made groundbreaking discoveries,but his super intellect was coupled with a kind and sensitive demeanour. His wisdom as a leader,diplomat,visionary and friend will sorely be missed by us all. He was equally as facile in the laboratory,as he was discussing modern literature,history and the "politics of life". Hundreds, if not thousands,of students,fellows, and peers directly benefitted from his formal and informal mentoring and incisive counsel. He taught us all so beautifully that the brain is coupled to the heart, both physiologically, as well as by personal example. Our sincerest condolences to Betty and all the family.

~ Shlomo Melmed (January 6, 2012, 6:17PM)




The world seems less bright knowing that Wylie is no longer in it. He was an amazing and generous scientist, mentor and friend. His sudden passing leaves a huge hole in my heart. He was a larger than life person whose laugh could instantly brighten a room. No one ever enjoyed life more than Wylie - his sense of humor, love of fritos and diet dr. pepper, and adorable smile will forever live in my heart.

~ Tracy Bale (January 6, 2012, 6:19PM)




I have known Wylie for many years. and was fortunate to have worked in his laboratory at The Salk Institute during a sabbatical .
He was perceptive, clever, intelligent, and his science was novel and important.
He was the father of a wonderful wife and two charming daughters.
He was among a handful of innovative and outstanding scientists .Both they and his friends will miss him greatly.

~ Robert Jaffe, M.D. (January 6, 2012, 6:28PM)




I have been in mourning since learning yesterday of Wylie's death. We talked research together, attended meetings together, had good times. I will miss his smile, and his science. Certainly my own science would not have been the same without his influence. And attending the meetings of our society will not be the same without his welcoming hello.

~ Neena Schwartz (January 6, 2012, 6:30PM)




Characterization of CRF, the urocortins and their cognate receptors together with several other seminal discoveries remain an outstanding everlasting testament to the brilliance and massive neuroendocrine and biomedical contributions of Wylie Vale. But Wylie was also a hugely generous, witty and fun human...a true "Mensch". Wylie's only tragic fault was that he left us precipitously, far too soon and without permission. Sincere condolences to Wylie's family and numerous Lab colleagues to whom he was utterly committed. He will be long remembered and sorely missed.

~ George Fink (January 6, 2012, 6:32PM)




This is a very sad moment in the history of endocrinology. We have lost a great leader. Wylie's scientific contributions are legendary. His work provided a molecular framework for the study environmental determinants of human health. But as noted by all, we will most miss Wylie the person. His wit, joy of all matters scientific and sheer humanity enriched all who knew him. My condolences to family members, both biological and scientific.

~ Michael Meaney (January 6, 2012, 6:40PM)




Wylie was an inspiration for everybody, even to scientists working outside the main-stream of the endocrinology. He was not only a brilliant scientist who made ground-breaking discoveries, but also supported new ideas growing on the periphery of endocrinology and skin biology. We lost a visionary leader, great scientist and a friend. He will stay in our memory.
Our sincerest condolences to all in his family, friends and co-workers.

~ Andrzej Slominski, MD, PhD (January 6, 2012, 6:46PM)




During my graduate years, I was in awe of Wylie Vale, his contributions to the inhibin/activin field were groundbreaking. I was fortunate enough to meet him at Endo meetings and at then at Salk during a visit. He was very clever, welcoming, kind, supportive and witty. I admired his youthful exuberance and continued passion for research. I will miss seeing him at meetings. My sincere condolences to his family and friends.

~ Yogesh Makanji (January 6, 2012, 7:08PM)




What a terrible loss. Wylie was so full of wonderful ideas, happiness, and positivity about science and life in general. His impact on endocrinology and neuroscience was huge. He led such a full and meaningful life. He will be so very much missed. My heartfelt sympathies go out to his family and associates.

~ Benita S. Katzenellenbogen (January 6, 2012, 7:08PM)




I did a sabbatical at the Salk a while back and got to know him well. Even though I was not in his lab, he was very generous and continued to be so. Very saddened...

~ Len Deftos (January 6, 2012, 7:11PM)




We are all heartbroked at the news about Wylie's untimely passing. Obviously, our research would never have gotten to where it is now without Wylie's seminal discoveries  More importantly, he was truly a joy to be around. I always tried to sit near Wylie at the past-officers breakfast at Endo because you knew that the humor would flow (in addition to thoughtful and useful comments). What a loss! I hope that the outpouring of emotion from our community will be comfort to his family and friends.

~ Hershel Raff (January 6, 2012, 7:28PM)




I heard last night, to my considerable sorrow, that Wylie Vale had died in his sleep the night before. The sorrow was for the jolt of the loss of him by everyone who knew and liked him as much or much more than I, although I recognize that, for him, it was a very kind way to die. I rue his removal from this world…he was a good and generous man, a serious scientist, with a lovely sense of humor, an invariant twinkle in his eye and an infectious laugh or more, a giggle. That sort of person is hard for me to let go from this world.

I watched Wylie grow from a post-doc who was looking for a job at Berkeley, and who gave a stiff and awkward seminar, to a man who had found himself and proved himself and did fine science all the while being punctilious with providing unique reagents from his lab to all who asked for them, and generous with his people. He was a remarkably quiet giant in the neuroendocrinology field synthesizing all of the CRFs and delineating the receptor family, the gonadal peptide hormones and hypothalamic neurohormones, and maintaining physiology/behavior along with the chemistry and biochemistry that he mastered with his group whom he chose very well. He was appropriately recognized  IOM, NAS and many very well deserved prizes and that's good. I am sad for the loss for all of us, and hope very much that the outpouring of responses from others who have interacted with Wylie will help, to some extent, his family with their great loss.

~ mary dallman (January 6, 2012, 7:52PM)




A wonderful scientist, true gentleman, and lovely person - an unmatched mix. Thank you Wylie for all you have done and given.

~ Paolo Sassone-Corsi (January 6, 2012, 7:54PM)




Wylie Vale's patience, mentoring and generosity with both his knowledge and his time during my postdoctoral research were the foundation to my future career successes. His passing leaves a vacuum. My condolences to his family and colleagues.

~ Gloria S. Patton (January 6, 2012, 7:55PM)




Wylie was an outstanding biologist, with a wide understanding of both science and medicine. He was a true friend; we stayed in one another's houses, and he gently offered me a position in La Jolla after the death of my wife Kathleen - on the basis that I might want to get away from Melbourne. To Betty and the girls, my very sincere best wishes and deepest sympathy.

~ John Funder (January 6, 2012, 7:57PM)




What a terribly sad, sad moment for Wylie's wife and daughters. He was such a wonderful husband and father who obviously cared so much for his family and helped fill them with lhis terrific sense of ife, humor, and balance in all things. He truly lit up there lives much as he did any room that he entered.

As a scientist and mentor, the previous comments of others speak to his talents, imagination, drive, and innovation. However, his wonderful caring for all he dealt with was equally remarkable. You always felt better after a conversation with Wylie. He never failed to fill you with new ideas, different perspectives, and healthy skepticism but also with a sense that all your ideas were both doabl and worth doing.

As a friend, he was truly precious. He was remarkably insighful, attentive, and invariably reflective and thoughtful. His perspective on all things was both helpful but always tailored to be specific to you and your individual circumstances. I missed him instantly from the minute Mark Montmimy thoughtfully called me about his passing . Although I think all of us would wish to exit much as Wylie did, it is difficult for those of us who will miss him, particularly his family at home and his family within the Endocrine Society.

~ Bill Crowley (January 6, 2012, 8:04PM)




These pages are surely to be flowing with tributes and reminiscences about this giant who walked among us. Wylie’s contributions to science will remain incalculable as are the opportunities he provided to so many individuals personally. Virtually everyone who spent any time with him has an abundance of Wylie Stories that will also, no doubt, come to be in our thoughts, make us smile and be shared for the umpteenth time. Few colleagues in any endeavor have ever been as widely admired, respected, been owed gratitude and now, mourned, as Wylie Vale.

~ Jeff Schwartz (January 6, 2012, 8:10PM)




Wylie provided a true inspiration to a whole generation of neuroendocrinologists. He will be sorely missed. My deepest sympathy to his family and the hundreds of friends, colleagues and former students and associates who benefitted from his briliance, intelligence and generosity.

~ Nira Ben-Jonathan (January 6, 2012, 8:36PM)




I first got to know Wylie when we shared a canoe during a 6 mile trip down the Connecticut River at a Hormone Action Gordon Conference. He was a brilliant, accomplished, and innovative scientist but also a wonderful and generous friend, collaborator, and colleague. His interests extended to fine food and wines, music, literature, movies, medicine, politics, and he had a phenomenal memory. Wylie was a happy, optimistic person who saw life as a glass half full. The Endocrine Society Meeting won’t be the same without his cheery presence and sense of humor. He was a very private person, witness that his death took so many of us by surprise, and he will be sorely missed. May his memory persist in the hearts and minds of his family and friends.

~ Barbara Attardi (January 6, 2012, 8:45PM)




Wylie was an inspiration to us all. He was a brilliant and outstanding scientist, and an incredibly kind and generous person. He has impacted so many of our lives. My deepest condolences to Wylie's family and many friends and colleagues. He will be dearly missed.

~ Heather N. Richardson (January 6, 2012, 8:47PM)




I was so shocked to receive a sad news. He was always joyful, cheerful and friendly man. About 25 year ago, I accomapnied him and his wife at Kyoto for sight-seeing. After that, he always talked to me that I had made a mistake in drinking Japanese tea, everytime we met. Last time, I met him and his wife at Rouen, France in 2010. My sincere best wishes to his family.

~ Hiroyuki Koshiyama (January 6, 2012, 8:49PM)




As a member of the NIH site visiting team of his CRF program project renewals I was always impressed by his visionary views. Wylie was not just a great scientist, but a leader, who impacted not only those who worked closely with him but also those who remotely interacted with him. Wylie will be definitely missed for a long time.

~ Abdul B Abou-Samra (January 6, 2012, 9:04PM)




So sad to learn of Wylie's passing. We became friends when we served 4 years together on the Endocrine Study Section in the mid 1980s. He always came to meetings with a handful of 'Texas' jokes that featured 'thyroid guys' from New York. So many laughs. I admired him greatly and will always miss his warmth and smile whenever we met.

~ Martin Surks (January 6, 2012, 9:04PM)




I was priviledged to have met Wylie who shared his knowledge and advice freely and who was unusually generous with reagents. He lacked the all too common trait of indifference.
His scientific achievements, humanity and wonderful humor will long be remembered.

~ William Singer (January 6, 2012, 10:59PM)




I still remember how much I was impressed by Wylie's award (I don't remember which one) presentation at an Endocrine Society meeting; every time a question occurred to me, he presented a brilliant answer to it. Later I was delighted to get to serve with him on the Program Committee and at the Gordon Conference. He did great things as a scientist and as a human being; the world will be dimmer without him.

~ Jim Florini (January 6, 2012, 11:28PM)




A start of our study on the cardiovascular effects of urocortin is his suggestion to use urocortin in our experimetal protocol. We thank him very much for giving chances to join the research of urocortins and his graceful supports.

~ Keiichi Ikeda (January 7, 2012, 1:07AM)




I am terribly shoked by this tragic news. Wylie was a giant in Neuroendocrinology with tremendous scientific and human qualities. We all have very fond memories of his generosity and kindness. The last time we met was at the ICN in Rouen, in July 2010, where he chaired a session and enjoyed the banquet with Betty in Saint-Ouen Abbey. His contagious smile and his deep sense of humor were legendary. His memory will persist in the hearts of all his friends. My warmest sympathy go to Betty and her two daughters.

~ Hubert Vaudry (January 7, 2012, 3:52AM)




Unfortunately, I did not know personally Dr Wylie Vale but his studies inspired me a lot at the beginning of my scientific life. The whole field of Endocrinology has lost one of its giants.

~ Vincent Geenen (January 7, 2012, 6:03AM)




I was truely sad to learn of Wiley's death. He was an inspiration to us all. Wiley led a great life and enriched the lives of others. He advanced science and medicine like few have, especially in endocrinology. He was a true gentleman and scholar who will be greatly missed.

~ Tom Badger (January 7, 2012, 6:15AM)




Wylie has been one of my closest friends since 1972 and not one year has gone by that we haven't spent time together, usually in some foreign land at a scientific meeting. In recent years we spent much time together flyfishing in Argentina, Alaska, Canada and had a trip planned in Texas next month. He was an "uber mensch", a great friend during good times and bad. That he was a fabulous scientist is known by all; that he was a wonderful, sweet, smart man with a fabulous sense of humor and that twinkle in his eye was known by his close friends and colleagues. He was loyal and sensitive and witty and everything you would ever want in a friend and more. I hope he realized how much we all loved him.
We meet many people in our professional and personal life but few touch us as Wylie has done. This is a tough one for all of us. My heart goes out to Betty and his daughters.

~ Charles Nemeroff (January 7, 2012, 8:18AM)




The endocrine community lost an outstanding individual in the passing of Wylie Vale. Everone will testify that he was a brilliant investigator and a super all around guy who's presence lite up a room. Many nice things can be said about this fine gentleman. My deepest sympathy to his wife and family.

~ Robert M. MacLeod (January 7, 2012, 8:30AM)




I had the great privilege of working with Wylie early in my service as chief staff officer at the Endocrine Society. I couldn’t understand well his science, but I understood his leadership and the deep love and pride he had in the Endocrine Society. He was simply inspiring, and certainly helped me to appreciate the responsibility I had, in my role, to science and the traditions of the Society. And when he found me to be taking myself too seriously he was ready to deflate me gently but surely. I enjoyed seeing him each year at ENDO, at the past-Presidents breakfast. The seat next to him was one of the first to be taken—he was a charming companion yet a thoughtful critic.

I will miss him, his smile, his humor and his warmth.

~ Scott Hunt, TES Staff (January 7, 2012, 8:51AM)




This is truly sad news. Our thoughts are with Wylie's family and all of our friends at the Salk. Wylie was a living legend but I really did not appreciate how much he had accomplished until I read the Endocrine Society citation from 1997 when he won the Koch award. I sent it to all of my trainees to read. He had a remarkable career and will be missed by everyone in the field.

~ Joel Elmquist (January 7, 2012, 8:58AM)




Wylie had such a big impact on so many of us, in both direct and indirect ways. I ended up in Oregon at the Vollum Institute for 20 years because Wiley turned down the job of Institute Director there. Then, when Neurocrine acquired our little Oregon biotech company, Northwest NeuroLogic, I had the great pleasure of serving five years on the scientific advisory board that Wiley ran. I really appreciated not only his intellect, but the way he could deliver an opinion directly, almost bluntly, but always with a great sense of humor. My sincere condolences to his family.

~ Roger Cone (January 7, 2012, 9:27AM)




I was shocked recieving yesterday so sad news.Wylie was an outstanding man and scientist.I have the honour to be a member of the Executive Committee of the ISE when he was the President and he always used to send me a greeting card with all his family´s photo.I will miss so much his friendship

~ Hugo L Fideleff (January 7, 2012, 9:43AM)




Since getting the call two days ago I cannot think of anything other than Wylie. My sincere condolences to Betty, Elizabeth and Susannah. Wylie was an inspiration to me and we worked closely together on GRF. However our relationship went deeper than that and he was not only a colleague and collaborator but a mentor and above all else a friend who was always available whenever the need arose. His depth was infinite whether it was discussing science, medicine, politics or just enjoying life! He did everything with panache and everything he did with aplomb and good humor. He never sought recognition and yet he was appropriately acclaimed for his many contributions. Endocrinology is richer for his contributions and we have lost one of our greatest leaders and visionaries. His example and our memory of him will sustain us in the future.

~ Michael Thorner (January 7, 2012, 9:52AM)




On behalf of the Reproductive Sciences Branch of the NICHD, we wish to express our deep condolences to family, colleagues and friends of Wylie. We have been privileged over the years to have supported such outstanding work by one of the premiere laboratories in the world. In particular, his presence will be missed at our annual Directors' Meeting where his easy-going demeanor and scientific vision were much appreciated and welcomed. On a personal level, I got to know Wylie during my brief stint at the Salk. He became a good friend and was always willing to give of his time and resources. I think the entire scientific community benefited from his generosity and perhaps that will be his greatest legacy.

~ Lou DePaolo (January 7, 2012, 10:11AM)




He was a name on exiting papers Felice Petraglia suggested me to read at the begininng of my career. When I first met him in person standing at my poster at the Endo Meeting more or less 20 years ago I realized why I was so inspired by reading his work...I feel like missing a friend I have talked only once...my sincere consolences to his family and to our Endo family

~ Rossella Nappi (January 7, 2012, 10:14AM)




Wylie's passing is a terrible loss for all who knew and loved him. From those heady days at Salk where he was instrumental in the discovery of key hypothalamic hormones, he continued to blaze scientific trails throughout his career and was an inspiration to so many of us. His generosity, warmth and humanity were unique amongst our community. No matter how much time had elapsed between seeing each other, there was always a big hug and radiant smile whenever we would meet. He lit up the room. He will be sorely missed. May his memory be a blessing for his entire family.

~ Gloria S. Tannenbaum (January 7, 2012, 10:24AM)




Shocking news spread fast and affected so many of us around the globe... A great mentor, colleague, person always available to answer any question, to openly discuss his thoughts on scientific issues, to express his thoughtful opinion on so many different subjects, to share stories and jokes. He will be greatly missed as a scientific leader, an enthusiastic colleague, a good friend...

~ Katia Karalis (January 7, 2012, 10:24AM)




I learned of Wylie’s death yesterday and it brought me to tears. My first meaningful interaction with Wylie occurred during the key days of his presidency in June 1993. That was several months after the death of my mentor Bill McGuire. Bill had been scheduled to give the Clinical Investigator Award Lecture at ENDO that June and I was asked to fill in. Of course, filling in for Bill was a ridiculous impossibility; besides, I had never given a major talk like the one on which I was about to embark. When Wylie, the ever-solicitous gentleman, arrived in the vast auditorium 20 minutes early to insure that all was going smoothly for the 8 AM lecture and saw my terrified face, he took me aside, calmed me down and restored my confidence. I have never forgotten his kindness. That confluence of recalling Bill’s death nearly 20 years ago and Wylie’s death this week has saddened me beyond words. I offer my heartfelt condolence to all who loved Wylie.

~ Kate Horwitz (January 7, 2012, 11:27AM)




I've known Wylie since he and I served together on the Endocrine Study section in the 70's. His enjoyment of science and infectious personality made each time we met memorable. I'll miss him.

~ Bob Harrison (January 7, 2012, 11:48AM)




What a shock this morning when I learned that Wylie passed away few days ago in Hawaii. He was and still will stay my mentor in Neuroendocrinology and even broadly in Science management, certainly one of the most impressive, talented and humanly attaching scientist I had the chance to work with. He was the “king” of PBL and much more than a “boss” during my stay as post-doc in his marvelous lab a wide ago, offering a space of intellectual freedom and all facilities, driving my first walks in the Endocrine field as a true “father” with a rare balance of rigor, dazzling ideas and terrific sense of humor. After I leaved the Salk Institute I brought as “take-home standard” to reach his outstanding love for scientific questioning and sense of efficiency respectful of mixed how-know. Despite the physical distance and evolution in scientific fields we kept in touch, Wylie being always the first to congratulate for a paper and sending wishes for the Christmas Holidays. Our last dinner with Betty in Rouen, discussing science, painting and politics while sharing a typical Norman cooking and wines he choose as a true “connaisseur”, will be forever engraved in my mind. His contribution to Science is outstanding and certainly the isolation and sequencing of the first CRH will remain an exceptional “tour de force” in the Neuroendocrine discoveries Pantheon. However, his seminal work embraced a larger view in the physiology of stress, reproduction and energy homeostasis, providing innovative perspectives in understanding how our brain may control the so called “milieu interieur”, a word coined by the French physiologist Claude Bernard and that Wylie was very pleased to use during ours, too short, evening brain-storming battles (he always wined obviously).
As representative of the French Neuroendocrine Society (SNE) and as a sadly touched friend I address my most sincere condolences to Betty, his daughters, Wylie’s family and colleagues and friends from the PBL lab. “Au-revoir” Wylie and as a fan of the Viking mythology you mastered so well, welcome to the Valhalla of glorious men!

~ Jean-Louis Nahon (January 7, 2012, 12:38PM)




Wylie was a terrific scientist...a leader and a visionary...but he was a true gentleman in the best sense of that word

~ Jan Bolaffi (January 7, 2012, 1:59PM)




Wylie was a bridegroom married to amazement.— Adapted from Mary Oliver

~ Robert A. Steiner (January 7, 2012, 2:35PM)




Although I never worked directly with Wylie, I have known him for many years and always admired his innovative science and creativity. He was truly able to think outside the box, but at the same time draw connections from his work to problems of everyday importance in central control of stress and metabolism.

I also got to see another side of Wylie as we both sat on the advisory board of a small foundation which provided support to institutions like the Salk and the Joslin, where I was president. In this capacity, Wylie was representing the work of young scientists at the Salk, some of whom he had trained and some of whom came from other disciplines. In this role, I saw Wylie as the father and a mentor of these junior faculty, not only supportive of their science, but supportive of their careers and personal development. Despite his soft-spoken manner, he was a strong ally and definitely a force for good in the development of his young colleagues and for the field of biomedial research. We will miss him.

~ C. Ronald Kahn (January 7, 2012, 2:49PM)




Such terrible and unexpected news on this cold and rainy Saturday morning in Oregon. Wylie gave us all something of himself, ....his intellect, his drive & curiosity, his advice and counsel, ....his friendship. But for me, he gave the most precious gift one human can give to another, he gave me his time. I will not forget him.

~ Barry Albertson (January 7, 2012, 3:07PM)




I will miss deeply Wylie's clear and insightful reflections of life. His humor, smile and incredibly sharp mind were always apparent. He provided much clarity for me in times of great stress. Scientifically, we have lost a great mind and leader par excellence. Personally, a dear friend and connaisseur of life. My thoughts are with Betty and the girls.

~ Larry Suva (January 7, 2012, 3:50PM)




When I opened the email yesterday night with the sad news of Wylie's death, I could barely articulate the news to my daughter, Alejandra, which had obtained her PhD while doing research at Wylie's department a few years ago. He was a great senior mentor for her and a firm supporter of her future endeavors. I new Wiley from the early 70's, when we overlapped in our neuroendocrine research in several areas, GnRH, CRF/ACTH, and later inhibin and related peptides. I can compare him with a captain of a great boat going though unexplored oceans, inviting you to ride with him or,selfishly, to ride your own boat taking advantage of his own knowledge. He graciously shared the tools he developed, peptides, antibodies, etc. without ever asking for any retribution or authorship.
As many who knew him well have said, he was always charming, friendly and with a great sense of humor. Every time we met, whether it was at our homes in La Jolla, at many meetings or occasionally at airports or vacationing in St John, I felt reinvigorated by meeting with him. Despite his outstanding scientific achievements, that made our own pale in comparison, he was modest and even self-deprecating, making him more unique among his peers.
We will miss him enormously, but should considered ourselves lucky to have known him and benefited from his knowledge, wisdom and charm.

~ Andres Negro-Vilar, MD,PhD (January 7, 2012, 5:23PM)




Wylie Vale was an irreplaceable friend of many years and an unending important contributor to both science and humanity.

~ Cy Bowers (January 7, 2012, 6:40PM)




This is very sad news. Professor Vale sent me inhibin beta A antibodes a few months ago. That really helps my research. He is a great scientist. I will miss him very much.

~ Yin Xia (Hong Kong), PhD (January 8, 2012, 8:15AM)




A reference Scientist in Endocrinology and a true gentleman. A priceless heritage for modern research and an example to follow.

~ renato bernardini (January 8, 2012, 8:49AM)




Wylie will be missed by hundreds of friends and colleagues around the world and we, at Fondation IPSEN, will be part of them. He has been for us not only a most appreciated support to our various activities but first of all a dear friend with whom we loved to share - besides scientific issues - common interest in wildlife, remote places (he kept asking us when we would be invited to a scientific meeting in Namibia or Alaska...) and his two Bengal cats.
It has been a great honor for us to have him, in 2002, as the first annual recipient of the Fondation IPSEN Endocrine Regulation prize. A most deserved recognition of his outstanding contribution to the domain. We are dearly thinking of Betty, Susannah and Elizabeth.

~ Jacqueline Mervaillie (January 8, 2012, 10:10AM)




After reading the previous 51 messages and because the personal condolences to the Wylie's family were already personally addressed, I was very uncertain on the necessity to a further contribution. However, I decided to give my testimony to all the Endocrine Society members who know Wylie Vale only because his outstanding scientific endocrine and neuroendocrine contributions, and for his fabulous IF or HI!! His papers are foundamental in all the endocrine areas, from hypothalamic neurohormones to stress, from growth factors to reproduction or to glucose metabolism or cardiovascular function. In particular, I have to admit that I was lucky to work directly with him at PBL many many years ago!! The Salk Institute is a wonderful scientific nest on the Pacific Ocean coast, full of Noble Prices and great scientists, and Wylie was one of the stars!  Without or with mustaches, without or with beard, Wylie was always one of the most representatives of the Institute. But he was also an outstanding forceful mentor, paying attention to all the professional and human details of his students and fellows (I will never forget the 1985 Thanksgiving with my 1 year old daughter Marga, invited to the party in his home in La Jolla).  Later in my life, I met him all trhoughout the World in the course of Scientific events and he constantly gave evidence of a strong feeling of friendship, support and promotion. We all agree that he was a real worldwide recognized gentleman, with high level of culture (you could talk with him of any form of art, but was great also discussing of cuisine and wines), and with high sence of humor. He received the honor to become a member of the American Academy of Art and Sciences and of the National Academy od Sciences, but he deserved the Noble Price!! The future generations of endocrinologists must remember of Wylie Vale and I hope that the Endocrine Society will generate a new Award in honor of Wylie Vale.
Therefore, I like to renovate my condolences to Betty, Elizabeth, Susannah and Celeste (his grandaughter) and to claim the same feeling to all of us who were lucky to meet Wylie!! we all miss him and reflect on a classic sentence by Augustine "Do not be sad for loosing him, but let us thank to have had him with us!! Do not cry his death, feel him close and thalk with him: he will love you from the sky like he loved you here".

~ Felice Petraglia (January 8, 2012, 12:16PM)




It was with great sadness that I learnt of Wylie’s death and send sincere condolences to his wife and family. A light has gone out in the room of Endocrinology. Wylie was impossible to ignore and it was always a great delight to meet him and hear of his last trip to Italy, what wine to drink and what the farm boy from Texas was doing next! He had such a presence and one gravitated naturally into his orbit. I often cited him as an example to my students, indicating his heroic achievements in neuroendocrinology, his perseverance and his genuine interest in, and encouragement of, younger faculty. Endocrinology and neuroendocrinology were in his blood (sic) and we had the pleasure of his company until the end (I last met him in Rouen, at the International Congress of Neuroendocrinology). We will remember him with affection and respect.

~ Iain Clarke (January 8, 2012, 3:43PM)




Since learning of Wylie’s death two days ago, he has been more or less constantly on my mind. Now, having just read all of the comments of his friends and colleagues here, I realize even more what an enormous impact he had on all of us. Since I retired from active involvement in endocrinology and the Endocrine Society several years ago, I have not had the pleasure of Wylie’s wit, warmth and wisdom for quite some time, but the knowledge that he is no longer with us is deeply saddening for me. I knew Wylie for many years in many settings and he was for me what he clearly was to so many others, a generous colleague, a constant friend, a dependable supporter, an inspiration both professionally and personally, and an unquenchable source of wry, self-deprecating humor. Linda and I once took our teenaged niece with us to a meeting in Puerto Rico. She was intimidated by all the scientists there and felt somewhat isolated until Wylie gallantly charmed her with his attentions and delighted her with his warm wit. She is now in her thirties, works in a science laboratory and has never forgotten Wylie’s kindness to her. He was that kind of man.

I imagine all of us would like to die in our sleep, though not when we are as young as Wylie was. All of us would like to be remembered as we remember Wylie. In the words of Mary Oliver in “When Death Comes,”

When it is over, I don't want to wonder if I have made of my life something particular, and real. I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened, or full of argument.

I don't want to end up simply having visited this world

Wylie didn’t simply visit this world, he enriched it in countless ways. We cannot be sad for Wylie. Rather, we are sad for his family and for us, that we no longer have him in our lives, but are deeply grateful that we did.

My sympathy and best wishes to Betty, Elizabeth and Susannah.

~ David Orth (January 8, 2012, 8:46PM)




What a terrible loss not only for Betty and the family but to all who knew Wylie and his work. The world has lost an outstanding scientist, mentor and collaborator, and the family and friends have lost an outstanding 'bloke'. Wylie's door was always open at the lab and at home. He was an inspiration to many and will be missed very much.
With condolences.

~ Jock Findlay (January 8, 2012, 9:02PM)




Wylie was a giant in the field of Neuroendocrinology and I like others was privileged to receive his council and advice on our work and plans. However, what sticks with me more than anything was what a nice warm individual he was, I remember many years ago when I was at Tufts, Wylie was visiting Boston and we had him over to our house. When dinner was ready we could not find Wylie. However, when I looked out at the backyard there he was pushing our 2 little girls ( about the same age as his own daughters at that time ) on the swing set. He will be missed. Our heartfelt condolences to his family.

~ Ivor Jackson (January 8, 2012, 11:10PM)




I am still in shock learning about Wylie's death. We lost an outstanding scientist and an one of the kind mentor. I will forever miss his witty wisdom and a quirky sense of humor.
My sincere condolences to Betty, Elizabeth and Susannah.

~ Chien Li (January 8, 2012, 11:19PM)




I have been distraught since I heard the sad news. It is difficult to overestimate the impact that Wylie had on Endocrinology. Perhaps it is best summed up by the words of Albert Pike:

'What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal.'

My sincere condolences to his wife and family.

~ Edward Hillhouse (January 9, 2012, 2:39AM)




I am so sorry to hear of Wylie's death. He was always generous in his support of our research in his gifts of reagents but most importantly his wisdom. Fond memories especially of sitting with Jock Findlay and Wylie overlooking the 18th at St Andrews golf course having a luxurious Scottish afternoon tea. Thanks Wylie for your time with us.

~ Alan McNeilly (January 9, 2012, 4:42AM)




Stress research will be different after the sudden and unexpected passing of Wylie. But the fundaments he had left are solid, so we can continue building on it. We have lost a great friend, mentor and inspiration for all us! It will be hard to fill in the gap he has left behind. I will miss him... But, he has changed the way I think and perform research, and I am sure he will stay with me in my memories and thoughts for a very long-long time. And what can give us some comfort in these sad days is that the ones who will never be forgotten, will never cease to exist.

~ Tamas Kozicz (January 9, 2012, 5:23AM)




I was deeply shocked and very saddened to learn of Wiley`s sudden death. I have known him and valued his friendship since his early days at the Salk Institute. He was a great neuroscientist whose contributions advanced knowledge of the physiology of the brain and its interactions with the endocrine system, and therefore the understanding of psycho-somatic relationships in such important ways. Additionally his findings had significant knock-on beneficial effects for patients. He will be fondly remembered for his personal qualities and friendship and admired for his science, for both of which we are grateful. My sympathies go out to Betty and the family.

~ Mike Besser (January 9, 2012, 8:20AM)




What sad news. Wylie has been a great inspiration to endocrinologists all over the world and large areas of our specialty have been enriched by his research. He has influenced so many of us at all stages in our careers. I have fond memories of meeting him at conferences where we were always treated to his lovely sense of humour and his gentle wit. My heartfelt condolences go out to his family.

~ Anne White (January 9, 2012, 8:48AM)




We are all so very saddened by the loss of Wylie Vale, a true hero in endocrinology, in science and in life. There are some for whom the glass is perpetually half-empty and some for whom it is half-full, but for Wylie, it always felt that life was truly full. Science can be a serious business, but it is truly such a joy to spend our days doing something that allows us to constantly look forward for the new discovery around the corner. Wylie lived this more than anyone that I know. His legacy will certainly include his remarkable science, but it will also include his unique excitement for life and the attention and enjoyment he brought to all those with whom he came in contact.

On behalf of the Endocrine Society, I want to extend our condolences to Wylie's family.

~ Janet Hall (January 9, 2012, 10:07AM)




Wylie's passing is a huge loss for the world of science. He was a great scientist and a gentleman. He had a very rare knack for being critical, funny and insightful-all at once. I will miss him a lot!

~ Bruce Spiegelman (January 9, 2012, 10:22AM)




Wonderful scientist and individual-gone too soon.

~ Pete Kohler (January 9, 2012, 10:54AM)




I want to extend condolences to his wife and family. The loss of Wylie Vale goes beyond the end of his brilliant scientific career and the confines of laboratories and journals. Yes, his work was in the premier class, but it is the man whose loss we mourn. We who knew him cannot forget his smile, his wit and infectious laugh, the warmth of a hug or conversation, the obvious love he had for his family and friends, and the unmistakable consideration of the people around him. His legacy of stellar research will be carried by scientists who knew and worked with him or read his work, but the SPECIAL MAN will be carried in our hearts and souls.

~ Gloria E. Hoffman (January 9, 2012, 11:31AM)




How sad to hear of Wylie's passing. He was a great scientist and good friend. He will always be remembered for his keen insight in science and good humor. His legacy will live on through his students and remembering his wonderful approach to science. He will be remembered in our prayers and our deepest sympathy to his wife Betty.

~ Francisco O. Calvo, PhD (January 9, 2012, 11:41AM)




I suppose, as is appropriate,one cannot but do homage to Wylie's science, but I'll remember him best for sharing a laugh and and a martini.

~ Bill Rosner (January 9, 2012, 12:18PM)




A scholar with a vibrant sense of humor who made me feel welcomed at the Hormone Action Gordon Conference when I was an Assistant Professor! He will be missed.

~ Sally Camper (January 9, 2012, 12:35PM)




For thirty five years, Wylie was my patient mentor, tireless supporter, respected adviser, trusted colleague, inspirational leader and treasured friend who graced my life and gilded my days.  I miss him deeply and will mourn him forever.

Good night sweet prince.

~ Marilyn Perrin (January 9, 2012, 1:00PM)




One of my first staff liaison experiences when I started working at The Endocrine Society was working with Wylie Vale as the chair for the Awards Committee. Wylie exemplified everything that I love about working with our members: approachable, kind, humble, respectful of staff work, and a great sense of humor. He will be greatly missed. My deepest sympathy to his family.

~ Elizabeth Kan - TES Staff (January 9, 2012, 1:46PM)




We have lost a scientific giant and a noble man, my condoleances to Betty and his daughters. I will miss your love of science and your love of life. The twinkle in your eyes, Wylie, will become the twinkle in our hearts.

~ Claire-Dominique Walker (January 9, 2012, 1:50PM)




Wylie will always be remembered for his brilliant scientific insights and the enthusiastic, skillful and FUN manner in which he guided his lab and colleagues to realize those amazingly accurate visions. It will be a different world without his infectious wit and sly humor (dishing on politicians has rarely been so fun). But most of all he was a sincerely generous and insightful mentor who profoundly bettered the lives of his lab members as scientists and as people. He delighted in so many aspects of life, none more endearing than his ever growing infatuation with his new granddaughter. His family is in our hearts.

~ Margaret Bradbury (January 9, 2012, 1:50PM)




From two members of "Wylie's tribe" living in New Zealand, we would like to express our deepest sorrow at his untimely passing. A major part of Wylie's legacy is his enduring inspiration of scientists across the globe. The world has lost a great thinker and statesman, and we have lost a wonderful mentor.

We send our heartfelt sympathy and support to Betty, Elizabeth and Susannah, and our colleagues at The Salk.

~ Vicky Cameron and Anna Pilbrow - Christchurch, New Zealand (January 9, 2012, 4:25PM)




It was such a shock for me to hear about Wylie's passing. I just saw him a few weeks ago at a symposium at Salk, he was full of energy and charm as usual, I can not believe that he is gone in such a sudden!

Wylie is a great scientist but more importantly a great person, he is smart, generous, witty, wise and humorous. It was fun and a great learning experience for me to to work as a postdoctor in his lab in the 90s. He is great role model for all of us who have been under his guidance and mentorship.

Wylie, we will all miss you!

~ Ruoping Chen (January 9, 2012, 6:50PM)




Please give my condolences to those it may concern

~ Carlos Lantos (January 10, 2012, 2:00AM)




For thirty-three years, Wylie guided my days at with his confidence, generous support and wisdom. A loyal and caring mentor who enriched my life with his effervescence and wry humor. I miss him to the very depth of my being.

~ Joan Vaughan (January 10, 2012, 12:22PM)




I was very sad to hear that Wylie Vale has passed away 4 days ago unexpectedly. He was a great scientist who left his marks in the field of endocrinology for ever. He was the one who discovered the structure of CRF and later helped to elucidate the structure of GRF providing the clinical endocrinologists with new tools to investigate the physiology and pathophysiology of anterior pituitary function. I met Wylie at many meetings and was always very much impressed by his relevant contributions demonstrating profound knowledge  of the subject.
I particularly remember the Ciba Foundation meeting in London in 1993 on Corticotropin Releasing Factor, where he served as president with wisdom and also a sense of humor, which made this conference not only fruitfull but also very enjoyable. We all will miss Wylie Vale.

~ Klaus von Werder (January 11, 2012, 5:33AM)




A very sad shock; I always enjoyed Wylie's sense of humor and his advice and his infectious energy for doing important science. Clearly he touched many people in life, and his spirit will live on in many hearts for a long time.

~ David Perrin (January 11, 2012, 1:30PM)




Wylie was the most complete academic colleague I ever knew. He was a mentor, a great scientist, and he gave generously of his time and talent. He was also just a wonderful person to know. His quirky sense of humor was unique. I learned so much from Wylie about science and leadership. Working with him in The Endocrine Society was truly a privilege; his advice was always so valuable and his support of basic research was critical. Every year I looked forward to the Past President's Breakfast at The Endocrine Society because I knew Wylie would be there and offering upbeat assessments. My deepest sympathies go to Betty and his daughters. I hope that they will gain a true sense of how much Wylie meant to all of us from the wonderful comments posted on this site.

~ Susan Smith (January 11, 2012, 11:01PM)




I met Wylie Vale several times: in Huston when he warked with R. Guillemin and we had verious nice talks on diverse endocrine issues, in Munich at the Endocrine Meeting where we discussed some posters, and in Lisbon at ISE Congress. Those short companionships I value and remember constantly. His early death is fully unexpected and it is distress for everybody who knew him.

~ Yuri Pankov (January 12, 2012, 7:56AM)




Wylie, You left the party much too early; it won't be as much fun, now, without your wit and wisdom.

~ Michael Conn (January 12, 2012, 9:00AM)




That any of us might live life as Wylie did, ultimately leaving this world with his beneficence - as reflected back on us through all of our memories and comments - is a remarkable touchstone for us all. As I read all of your tremendous messages, reflect on my modest times with Wylie and on my own temperament – I realize that what I desire most is to be like Wylie. He has been a role model for us all – certainly, not only on how to be a successful and "grounded" scientist – but on how to live out our limited time here fully engaged all the while caring deeply for others. Thank you Wylie. This legacy is - to me - your finest and most precious. Peace.

~ Gary Hammer (January 12, 2012, 6:39PM)




My enduring image is Wylie's infectious smile and chortle, accompanied by a cheeky humourous refrain. Always freshly enquiring, his constant riposte was "Millar when are you going to leave Africa?" followed by "So what's new?" Once the banter was done, the discussion of new science was inevitably engaging, stimulating and inspiring. Bernard of Chartres' metaphor "nanos gigantium humeris insidentes", (dwarfs standing on the shoulders of giants ), and famously used by Newton, is a perfect description of the way in which so many of us have benefited from the astounding platform of science established by Wylie. He leaves a lasting legacy of friendship and a scientific life devoted to mentorship, integrity and accomplishment at the highest level.

~ bob millar (January 13, 2012, 3:13PM)




Wylie,

I want you to know that no matter how I felt before talking to you, I always felt better after talking to you. After we spoke, I was always ready to take on life again, head on.

Wylie, thank you for being so positive and optimistic. You always made me feel important and made time to listen to me and even entertain my crazy ideas.

It's impossible to describe how proud and honored I am to have worked under you and to have you as my mentor and friend.

It's impossible to describe how thankful I am for all the kindness, guidance and the opportunities you unselfishly provided me through the years.

It's impossible to describe the enormous impact you have had on my life.

I feel incredibly lucky to have known you.

All the memories and everything you taught me will be a part of me and remain with me in my heart, always.

Rest in peace, my friend. Rest in peace.

Dominic Behan

~ Dominic Behan (January 16, 2012, 12:48AM)




I was one of the fortunate to spend a year in the lab on sabbatical and learn how to culture hypothalami. This allowed me to move into the neuropeptide regulation of body weight and change my career direction for many years. More importantly I had a wonderful time with an inspiring group led by the charismatic Wylie Vale. He had a rare combination of scientific rigor and humor and will I am sure be sorely missed. Hopefully his example will live on in the lives of his younger colleagues and friends.

~ Dan Porte (January 17, 2012, 1:06PM)




Along with my many colleagues at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) who were lucky enough to have known and worked with Wylie, I was very saddened to hear of his recent passing.

For a person of his professional stature and towering intellect, Wylie was incredibly down-to-earth. I learned that he, as a great baseball fan, often attended nighttime games with NIDDK staff and other scientists at whatever ball park was near the annual Endocrine Society meeting site, and that a good time was always had by all who were with Wylie. He was funny, charming and caring, as well as a brilliant scientist.

Wylie was doing translational science before that became such a buzzword. His long-running, NIDDK-supported work on neuropeptides, especially CRH and urocortin, is being developed as potential therapies for many conditions ranging from depression and anxiety to heart failure and diabetes. I read online that he “made The Salk Institute what it is today.” I would argue that in many ways, Wylie has done the same for endocrinology research and advances at the NIDDK.

He was one of our favorite NIDDK Council members, keeping discussions lively and to the point. More importantly, he helped make NIDDK better through his service and advice, and nurtured a generation of neuroscientists. Wylie was always an accessible and contributory grantee, helping program staff to understand trends in the field, emerging leaders and new ideas.

In my view, what may exemplify Wylie’s passion for life most were the annual trips that he and his family (as well as members of his lab and colleagues) would make down to the Baja peninsula, stopping at isolated and unmarked beaches along the way and exploring the wild stretches of the desert. Whether at baseball games or on these trips, the times away from the lab always seemed to help Wylie maintain a good perspective on the important things in life beyond his outstanding science.

On that note, Wylie was the consummate scientist and scientific citizen. Not only was he a major force behind our understanding of neuroendocrine control of brain function, but also a generous and energetic contributor to the process of science through his service to the NIDDK and The Endocrine Society. Wylie will be greatly missed by those of us who were his friends and colleagues.

Griffin P. Rodgers, M.D., M.A.C.P.
Director
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases

~ Griffin P. Rodgers, M.D., M.A.C.P., NIDDK Director (January 20, 2012, 2:06PM)




I was one of the fortunate to spend a year in the lab on sabbatical and learn how to culture hypothalami. This allowed me to move into the neuropeptide regulation of body weight and change my career direction for many years. More importantly I had a wonderful time with an inspiring group led by the charismatic Wylie Vale. He had a rare combination of scientific rigor and humor and will I am sure be sorely missed. Hopefully his example will live on in the lives of his younger colleagues and friends.

~ Dan Porte (January 17, 2012, 1:06PM)




It was sad news that Wylie passed away in Hawaii. His contribution to not only the Endocrine Society but also to international scientific community was really enormous and, therefore his demise caused big void in our mind. Many Japanese endocrinologists join me in sending our heartiest condolence to Betty and all of the family.

~ Hiroo Imura (January 22, 2012, 9:50AM)