James Thomson (cell biologist)

James Thomson (cell biologist)

James Alexander Thomson (born December 20 1958, at Oak Park, Illinois, USA) is an American developmental biologist. He serves as director of regenerative biology at the [http://www.morgridgeinstitute.org/ Morgridge Institute for Research] in Madison, Wisconsin, and is a professor at the [http://www.med.wisc.edu/ University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health] . In 2007, he became an adjunct professor in the Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology (MCDB) Department at the University of California, Santa Barbara. [ [http://independent.com/news/2007/apr/20/ucsb-snags-father-stem-cell-research/ "UCSB Snags 'Father of Stem-Cell Research' Jamie Thomson Setting Up Shop in SB"] , "Santa Barbara Independent", April 20, 2007.] He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences. In the May 12, 2008, issue of TIME magazine, he was named one of 100 of the most influential people in the world.


Thomson graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a B.S. in biophysics from the University of Illinois in 1981. He entered the Veterinary Medical Scientist Training Program at the University of Pennsylvania, receiving his doctorate in veterinary medicine in 1985, and his doctorate in molecular biology in 1988. His doctoral thesis, conducted under the supervision of Davor Solter at the Wistar Institute in Philadelphia, PA, involved understanding genetic imprinting in early mammalian development.

Dr. Thomson joined the University of Wisconsin-Madison after spending two years as a postdoctoral research fellow in the Primate In Vitro Fertilization and Experimental Embryology Laboratory at the Oregon National Primate Research Center.

Current employment

He is the director of regenerative biology at the Morgridge Institute for Research in Madison, Wisconsin. In addition to being a professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, he is also a member of the Genome Center of Wisconsin.

Thomson's research

Since joining the Wisconsin National Primate Research Center, he has conducted pioneering work in the isolation and culture of non-human primate and human embryonic stem cells, undifferentiated cells that have the ability to become any of the cells that make up the tissues of the body. Dr. Thomson directed the group that reported the first isolation of embryonic stem cell lines from a non-human primate in 1995, work that led his group to the first successful isolation of human embryonic stem cell lines in 1998.

On November 6, 1998, "Science" published the results of his research, "Embryonic Stem Cell Lines Derived from Human Blastocysts". [ [http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/282/5391/1145 "Embryonic Stem Cell Lines Derived from Human Blastocysts"] , "Science", November 6, 1998.]

On November 22, 2007, the New York Times reported that on November 20, 2007, Dr. Thomson's laboratory had reported determining a method to modify human skin cells in such a way that they appear to be embryonic stem cells without using a human embryo which was published in the journal "Science" and is one of the two revolutionary iPS cell (induced pluripotent stem cell) works reported in late 2007. [ [http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/22/science/22stem.html?ex=1353387600 "Man Who Helped Start Stem Cell War May End It"] , "New York Times", November 22, 2007.] [ [http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/1151526 "Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Lines Derived from Human Somatic Cells] , Yu, J. et al., "Science" 2007, 318, 1917-1920.]


External links

* http://ink.primate.wisc.edu/~thomson/
* [http://www.news.wisc.edu/on-wisconsin/soft-cell/ For stem cell scientist James Thomson, discovery trumps fame] , article from the University of Wisconsin-Madison's alumni magazine
* [http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/8303756/ Stem cell pioneer does a reality check] , MSNBC interview with James Thomson

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