Daniel Mazia

Stanford University

December 18, 1912 - June 9, 1996

Scientific Discipline: Cellular and Developmental Biology
Membership Type:
Member (elected 1960)

Daniel Mazia changed the way scientists look at the cell. His most significant biochemical studies were related to mitosis (cell division). He isolated the mitotic spindle, the fibrous materials (microtubules) that act as the machinery of cell division and their associated proteins. This discovery had important implications for biomedical and cancer studies because characterization and analysis of the proteins and enzymes involved in the mitotic spindle allowed researchers to understand the controlled mechanism of mitosis.
Mazia earned his B.A.  from the University of Pennsylvania in 1933 and received his PhD in 1937. From 1937 to 1938 he was a National Research Council fellow in biology at Princeton University. He then became a professor of zoology at the University of Missouri. During WWII he served as a captain in the Army Air Force. From 1951 until his retirement in 1979 he was a professor of zoology at the University of California, Berkeley and a visiting professor and lecturer at many prestigious institutions.

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