DANIEL NATHANS DIRECTORSHIP OF THE DEPARTMENT OF MOLECULAR BIOLOGY AND GENETICS AND PROFESSORSHIP IN MOLECULAR BIOLOGY AND GENETICS
Established in 1999 with gifts from several donors in memory of Daniel Nathans

DANIEL NATHANS won the Nobel Prize in medicine in 1978, sharing the honor with his colleague, fellow Hopkins professor Hamilton O. Smith, Med 1956, and Swiss microbiologist Werner M. Arber. Dr. Nathans earned the high honor for his contributions to the discovery and use of a restriction enzyme as "biochemical scissors" to break apart and analyze DNA. This research paved the way for the entire field of genetic engineering and helped launch the biotechnology revolution. In 1993, he received the nation's highest scientific award, the National Medal of Science.

Dr. Nathans joined the faculty in 1962 and went on to direct the Department of Microbiology, later renamed the Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics. He served as interim president of the university from 1995 to 1996. Dr. Nathans, who died in 1999, was a distinguished scientist and a beloved teacher and mentor.

 

"...Remember to care for the whole person. Medicine is a noble profession. It's much more than applied science, and it is much more than the bottom line."
Daniel Nathans

 

CAROL W. GREIDER is the inaugural Daniel Nathans Director of the Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics and Professor in Molecular Biology and Genetics. A Hopkins faculty member since 1997, Dr. Greider studies the ends of chromosomes or telomeres and the enzyme that maintains them called telomerase. She has served on numerous national committees, including the National Bioethics Advisory Committee. In 2003, Dr. Greider was honored with membership in the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She is the recipient of the National Academy's Richard Lounsbery Award, the Passano Award, and the Rosenstiel Award in Basic Medical Research. Dr. Greider was named to share the 2006 Albert Lasker Award. In 2009 she shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine from the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences in recognition of her 1984 discovery of telomerase.