November 9, 2015
Talk by Eric S. Lander, MIT Professor of Biology, Harvard Medical School Professor of Systems Biology, and Founding Director of the Broad Institute
Elucidation of the sequence of the human genome surely ranks as one of the greatest scientific achievements of the past century. Dr. Eric Lander has pioneered this effort since its beginning. His research, and that of his colleagues around the world, have revealed the function of many genes that contribute to human variation and shown how, when defective, these genes result in human disease. In short, knowledge of the human genome, and of thousands of other genomes (of plants, animals, bacteria and viruses), has transformed both biological research and medical practice. Moreover, the implications of the work extend to diverse fields including anthropology, philosophy and law.
This talk is designed for those with a scientific background and those seeking a more general understanding of the human genome.
Lander is an elected member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the U.S. Institute of Medicine, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences Class of Biosciences. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the MacArthur Foundation Fellowship, the Gairdner International Award, the Max Delbrück Medal, the AAAS Award for Public Understanding of Science and Technology, the Dart/NYU Biotechnology Achievement Award, the Dan David Prize from Tel Aviv University, the Harvey Prize from Technion University, the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences, the Block Memorial Lectureship Award for Distinguished Achievement in Cancer Research and 10 honorary doctorates. He received the Albany Medical Center Prize in Medicine and Biomedical Research and the New York Academy of Medicine Medal for Distinguished Contributions in Biomedical Science. Lander was chosen for Time Magazine’s “Ten Years of Influence” and for Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center’s “the one hundred.” Lander has been a member of the Board of Trustees at Boston University since 2008 and, in 2009, President Barack Obama appointed him to co-chair the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. Lander earned his B.A. in mathematics from Princeton University and his Ph.D. in mathematics from Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar.