American Philosophical Society
Member History

Results:  1 ItemModify Search | New Search
Page: 1Reset Page
207. Genetics[X]
1Name:  Dr. Gary Ruvkun
 Institution:  Harvard Medical School; Massachusetts General Hospital
 Year Elected:  2019
 Class:  2. Biological Sciences
 Subdivision:  207. Genetics
 Residency:  Resident
 Living? :   Living
 Birth Date:  1952
Gary Ruvkun is currently Professor of Genetics at Harvard Medical School and Hans-Hermann Schoene Distinguished Investigator in the Department of Molecular Biology at Massachusetts General Hospital. He earned his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1982. Gary Ruvkun discovered, with Victor Ambros, that small non-coding RNAs play a central role in eukaryotic gene regulation. Prior to this discovery it was universally assumed that the regulation of gene expression was controlled entirely by proteins. The discovery of a whole new layer of regulation mediated by what are now known as micro-RNAs has revolutionized thinking about regulatory mechanisms. Ruvkun’s genetic studies have contributed greatly to our understanding of micro-RNA biogenesis and action. In a second major advance, Ruvkun and Cynthia Kenyon provided the first convincing evidence that organismal aging is controlled by genetic programs, thereby opening a new approach to the study of aging. Finally, Ruvkun has studied how organisms respond to toxins, showing that it is not individual compounds that are recognized but rather their toxic effects, such as slower protein synthesis. Detection of toxicity then leads to a multi-faceted response aimed at countering the toxic insult. Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research, 2008; Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences, 2015. Author: (B. Reinhart et al.) “The 21 nucleotide let-7 RNA regulates developmental timing in C. elegans,” Nature, 2000; (A. Pasquinelli et al.) “Conservation of the sequence and temporal expression of let-7 heterochronic regulatory RNA,” Nature, 2000; (Y. Liu et al.) “Caenorhabditis elegans pathways that surveil and defend mitochondria,” Nature, 2014. National Academy of Sciences, 2008; National Academy of Medicine, 2009; American Academy of Arts & Sciences, 2009. Gary Ruvkun was elected a member of the American Philosophical Society in 2019.
Election Year