The Human Genome Project


The Human Genome Project


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Born in Chicago, Illinois, in 1928, Dr. Watson received a B.S. (1947) from the University ol Chicago and a Ph.D. (1950) from Indiana University, both in zoology. Following a National Research Fellowship in Copenhagen and a National Foundation of Infantile Paralysis Fellowship at the University of Cambridge, England, he spent two years at the California Institute of Technology. He joined the Harvard faculty in 1955 and became Professor in 1961, resigning in 1976 to become Director ol Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. In 1988 he was also appointed Associate Director tor Human Genome Research of the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Watson was awarded the John Collins Warren Prize of Massachusetts General Hospital (1959), the Eli Lilly Award in Biochemistry (1960), the Albert Lasker Prize, awarded by the American Public Health Association (1960), the Research Corporation Prize (1962), the John J. Carty Gold Medal of the National Academy of Sciences (1971 ), and the Presidential Medal of Freedom (1977). His memberships include the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (1958), the American Society of Biological Chemists (1958), the National Academy of Sciences (1962), the American Association for Cancer Research (1972), and the American Philosophical Society (1977). He holds honorary affiliations with the Danish Academy of Arts and Sciences (1963), Clare College, Cambridge University (1968), Athenaeum, London (1980), the Royal Society, London (1981) and the Academy of Sciences, USSR (1989). Dr. Watson has received honorary degrees from fourteen universities and has published live books: Molecular Biology of the Gene, The Double Helix, The DNA Story, Molecular Biology of the Cell, and Recombinant DNA: A Short Course.

His work: James D. Watson is best known tor his discovery ol the structure ol deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), tor which he shared with Francis Crick and Maurice Wilkins the 1962 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. The "Watson and Crick" model ol DNA structure lead inevitably to a revolution in biology which culminated in the development of modern recombinant-DNA techniques. James D. Watson is the Director of the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and Associate Director for Human Genome Research of the National Institutes of Health.

(This information was taken from the Distinguished Scientist Lecture Series Program 1992-1992).


Molecular Biology

Creation Date

March 7, 1992

The Human Genome Project