D. James Morré, PhD, professor emeritus in the Department of Chemistry at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, died June 16, 2016, at the age of 81. Morré, AACR member since 1979, had been the chief executive officer and director of research at MorNuCo Inc. since founding the company with his wife, Dorothy M. Morré, PhD, in 2011.
Born Oct. 20, 1935, in Drake, Missouri, Morré graduated from the University of Missouri in Columbia, and received his master’s degree at Purdue and his doctoral degree in biochemistry at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena. In 1962, Morré worked with Hilton H. Mollenhauer at the Cell Research Institute at the University of Texas in Austin as a visiting assistant professor. Later that year, he began his tenure at Purdue, in the Botany and Plant Pathology Department.
Morré went on to serve as the first director of the Purdue Cancer Center from 1976 to 1986 and Dow distinguished professor at Purdue College Pharmacy from 1986 to 2009. He also served the cancer research community internationally, including a sabbatical in 1969 at the Université de Paris, guest senior scientist at the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg in 1976, and was Chargé de Cours at the University of Geneva in Switzerland from 1985 to 1988.
Morré often worked in a research team with his wife, Dorothy, a professor of foods and nutrition in Purdue’s School of Consumer and Family Sciences. Together the Morré’s discovered a single protein responsible for setting the length of periods of activity and inactivity within cells, acting as a biological clock. They also presented evidence of green tea’s potential to ward off cancer.
In addition to his wife, he is survived by three children, nine grandchildren, and seven great grandchildren.