American Association for Cancer Research

Scientists on Science

A New Paradigm on Cancer Prevention

What We Are Learning from Chromosones Ends?


A talk by Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn

Dr. Elizabeth BlackburnElizabeth H. Blackburn, Ph.D., a 2009 Nobel Laureate, is the Morris Herzstein professor of biology and physiology in the department of biochemistry and biophysics at the University of California, San Francisco.

She discovered the molecular nature of telomeres - the ends of eukaryotic chromosomes that serve as protective caps essential for preserving the genetic information - and the ribonucleoprotein enzyme, telomerase. Blackburn and her research team at the University of California, San Francisco, are working with various cells including human cells, with the goal of understanding telomerase and telomere biology.

Throughout her career, Blackburn has been honored as the recipient of many prestigious awards. She is an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences, and an elected fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Royal Society of London, the American Academy of Microbiology and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. From 2002 to 2004, she served on the President’s Council on Bioethics. She has received numerous national and international awards, including the Albert Lasker Medical Research Award in Basic Medical Research, the L’Oreal-UNESCO “For Women in Science” Award, the Pezcoller Foundation-AACR International Award for Cancer Research and the Kirk A. Landon-AACR Prize for Basic Cancer Research.

In April 2011, as part of the AACR’s ScientistSurvivor Program, Blackburn spoke to a group of survivors and patient advocates about cancer prevention and interception.