HomeOur ScientistsThomas A. Steitz

Our Scientists

Thomas A. Steitz, PhD
Investigator / 1986–Present

Scientific Discipline

Biochemistry, Structural Biology

Host Institution

Yale University

Current Position

Dr. Steitz is also Sterling Professor of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry and a professor of chemistry at Yale University.

Current Research

Structural Basis of Replication and Gene Expression

Thomas Steitz uses the methods of x-ray crystallography and molecular biology to establish the structures and mechanisms of the proteins and nucleic acids involved in gene expression, replication, and recombination.

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Biography

Dr. Steitz is also Sterling Professor of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry and Professor of Chemistry at Yale University. He received a B.A. degree in chemistry from Lawrence College in Appleton, Wisconsin, and a Ph.D. degree in molecular…

Dr. Steitz is also Sterling Professor of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry and Professor of Chemistry at Yale University. He received a B.A. degree in chemistry from Lawrence College in Appleton, Wisconsin, and a Ph.D. degree in molecular biology and biochemistry from Harvard, with William Lipscomb. After a postdoctoral year at Harvard, he moved to the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, England, to work as a Jane Coffin Childs fellow with David Blow. He next joined the Yale faculty, where he has remained, except for sabbatical work with Klaus Weber in Göttingen, Germany; Aaron Klug at Cambridge; John Abelson at the California Institute of Technology; and Thomas Cech and Olke Uhlenbeck at the University of Colorado. He has received the Pfizer Prize from the American Chemical Society, the Lewis S. Rosenstiel Award for distinguished work in basic medical sciences, the 2001 Newcomb Cleveland Prize from the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Lawrence University Lucia R. Briggs Distinguished Achievement Award, the 2006 Keio Medical Science Prize, the 2007 Gairdner International Award, and the 2009 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Dr. Steitz is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He was recently elected a foreign member of the Royal Society.

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Education

  • BA, chemistry, Lawrence College
  • PhD, biochemistry and molecular biology, Harvard University

Awards

  • 2009 Nobel Prize in Chemistry
  • Gairdner International Award
  • Keio Medical Science Prize
  • Lewis S. Rosenstiel Award
  • Newcomb Cleveland Prize, American Association for the Advancement of Science
  • Pfizer Prize, American Chemical Society
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Memberships

  • American Association for the Advancement of Science, Fellow
  • National Academy of Sciences
  • American Academy of Arts and Sciences
  • Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry
  • The Royal Society, Foreign Member
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