| Plant scientist|
| David Charles Baulcombe
April 7, 1952 (age 63)
Solihull, West Midlands (1952-04-07) |
University of East Anglia
University of Cambridge
Trinity College, Cambridge
University of Leeds (BSc)
University of Edinburgh (PhD)
The Processing and Intracellular Transport of Messenger RNA in a Higher Plant (1976)
small interfering RNA
Wiley Prize (2003)
Massry Prize (2005)
Royal Medal (2006)
Lasker Award (2008)
Knight Bachelor (2009)
Harvey Prize (2009)
Balzan Prize (2012)
University of Edinburgh, University of Leeds
Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research
Olivier Voinnet, Robert A. Martienssen
Victor Ambros, Gary Ruvkun, Andrew Fire, Craig Mello, Thomas Tuschl
Norwich, United Kingdom
David Baulcombe Wikipedia
Sir David Charles Baulcombe FRS FMedSci (born 1952) is a British plant scientist and geneticist. As of 2017 he is a Royal Society Research Professor and Regius Professor of Botany in the Department of Plant Sciences at the University of Cambridge.
David Baulcombe was born in Solihull, West Midlands (then Warwickshire). He received his Bachelor of Science degree in botany from the University of Leeds in 1973 at the age of 21. He continued his studies at the University of Edinburgh, where he received his Doctor of Philosophy degree in 1977 for research on Messenger RNA in vascular plants supervised by John Ingle.
After his PhD, Baulcombe then spent the following three years as a post-doctoral fellow in North America, first at McGill University (Montreal, Quebec, Canada) from January 1977 to November 1978, and then at the University of Georgia (Athens, Georgia, United States) until December 1980. Baulcombe returned to the United Kingdom then, where he joined the Plant Breeding Institute (PBI) in Cambridge and started his career as an independent scientist. At the PBI, Baulcombe initially held the position of Higher Scientific Officer, and was promoted to Principal Scientific Officer in April 1986. In August 1988 Baulcombe left Cambridge for Norwich. He joined the Sainsbury Laboratory as a Senior Research Scientist, and also served as Head of Laboratory between 1990 and 1993 and 1999–2003. In 1998 he was appointed Honorary Professor at the University of East Anglia, and given a full professorship there in 2002. In March 2007 it was announced that Baulcombe would become the next Professor of Botany at Cambridge University as a Royal Society Research Professor, taking up his post in September 2007. He serves on several committees and study sections, was elected Member of the European Molecular Biology Organisation in 1997 and was president of the International Society of Plant Molecular Biology 2003–2004. As of 2007, he is also a senior advisor for The EMBO Journal.
Baulcombe's research interests and contributions to science are mainly in the fields of virus movement, genetic regulation, disease resistance, and gene silencing.
With Andrew Hamilton he discovered the small interfering RNA that is the specificity determinant in RNA-mediated gene silencing. Baulcombe's group demonstrated that while viruses can induce gene silencing, some viruses encode proteins that suppress gene silencing. After these initial observations in plants, many laboratories around the world searched for the occurrence of this phenomenon in other organisms. In 1998 Craig Mello and Andrew Fire reported a potent gene silencing effect after injecting double stranded RNA into Caenorhabditis elegans. This discovery was particularly notable because it represented the first identification of the causative agent for the phenomenon. Fire and Mello were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2006 for their work.
With other members of his research group at the Sainsbury Laboratory, Baulcombe also helped unravel the importance of small interfering RNA in epigenetics and in defence against viruses.
In June 2009, Baulcombe was awarded a knighthood by Queen Elizabeth II. Baulcombe resides in Norwich. Baulcombe has also received the following honours and awards:
Baulcombe's nomination for the Royal Society reads
Baulcombe is married and has four children. His interests include music, sailing and hill walking.