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Capecchi To Present 33rd Nobel Laureate Lecture On March 1

Published: February 15, 2011

Mario R. Capecchi, winner of the 2007 Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine, will present CSULB’s 33rd Nobel Laureate Lecture on Tuesday, March 1.

He will speak from 11 a.m.-noon on “The Making of a Scientist—An Unlikely Journey,” and from 4-5 p.m. on “Gene Targeting into the 21st Century: Mouse Models of Human Disease Neuropsychiatric Disorders,” in the University Student Union Ballrooms.

Capecchi is Distinguished Professor in the Eccles Institute of Human Genetics and a founding member of the Brain Institute at the University of Utah, where he has been since 1973.

He was recognized for his pioneering work in gene targeting of mouse embryo-derived stem cells that hold possibilities for understanding and developing treatments for a host of diseases. He shared the prize with Martin Evans of Cardiff University in Wales and Oliver Smithies of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Capecchi was born in Italy in 1937. During World War II, his mother was imprisoned in the Dachau concentration camp and he suffered periods of childhood homelessness and hunger. They reunited after the war and immigrated to the United States.

He graduated from George School and received his B.S. in chemistry and physics from Antioch College in 1961 and his Ph.D. in biophysics from Harvard University in 1967. He completed his thesis work under the guidance of James D. Watson, co-discoverer of the structure of DNA, then taught for four years at Harvard Medical School before joining the Utah faculty.

The CSULB Nobel Laureate Lecture is free to the public and is co-sponsored by the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics Dean’s Office and Student Council, Office of the President, and Associated Students Inc.

For additional information, contact Linda Sherwood of the Office of Student Life and Development at 562/985-2716.

–Anne Ambrose

Mario Capecchi
Mario Capecchi