Research Interests

I describe myself as a molecular (cell) physiologist. While trying to understand how the oxygen carrier heme controlled the synthesis of its protein-binding partner, globin, I discovered that minute concentrations of double-stranded RNA, or low levels of oxidized glutathione, inhibited protein synthesis just like shortage of heme. Following these leads, I identified protein kinases that could switch off protein synthesis and allowed the development of highly active and well-understood extracts of young red blood cells ("reticulocytes") for assaying messenger RNA. Turning to different cells in which to study the control of protein synthesis, I discovered a protein in fertilized sea urchin eggs that was very suddenly and specifically degraded during cell division. Following this protein, which I called cyclin, led to studies of cell cycle control and cell cycle-regulated proteolysis. Most of the work in my laboratory now focuses on the meiotic and mitotic cell cycles of frog eggs.

Membership Type

International Member

Election Year


Primary Section

Section 22: Cellular and Developmental Biology

Secondary Section

Section 21: Biochemistry