Joshua Lederberg

Also found in: Medical, Wikipedia.

Lederberg, Joshua

(lā`dərbûrg'), 1925–2008, American geneticist, b. Montclair, N.J., grad. Columbia, 1944, Ph.D. Yale, 1948. He is known for his studies of the genetic mechanisms of bacteria. He shared with G. W. BeadleBeadle, George Wells,
1903–89, American geneticist, b. Wahoo, Nebr., grad. Univ. of Nebraska (B.S., 1926; M.S., 1927), Ph.D. Cornell, 1931. Beadle taught (1931–36) biology at the California Institute of Technology, where he also began genetic research on the fruit
..... Click the link for more information.
 and E. L. TatumTatum, Edward Lawrie,
1909–75, American geneticist, b. Boulder, Colo., grad. Univ. of Wisconsin (B.A., 1931; M.S., 1932; Ph.D., 1935). From 1937 to 1945 he taught at Stanford and from 1945 to 1948 at Yale.
..... Click the link for more information.
 the 1958 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for establishing that sexual recombination occurs in bacteria. Lederberg showed that although bacteria reproduce only by dividing, they are able to effect sexual recombination by processes that result in exchange of genetic material between different bacteria. A pioneer in the fields of bacterial genetics, microbiology, and molecular biology, he taught at the Univ. of Wisconsin (1947–59) and Stanford Univ. (1959–78) and joined Rockefeller Univ. in 1978 as its president, serving until 1990.

Lederberg, Joshua


Born May 23, 1925, in Montclair, N.J., USA. American geneticist and biochemist.

Lederberg graduated from Columbia University in 1944 and continued his education at Yale University, where he received the doctor of philosophy degree in 1947. From 1947 to 1958 he was at the University of Wisconsin. Since 1959 he has been a professor at the Medical School of Stanford University in Palo Alto and head of its Laboratory for Molecular Medicine and simultaneously (since 1962) professor at the University of California at Berkeley. He discovered the mechanism of genetic recombination in bacteria in 1947. Lederberg was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1958 together with G. Beadle and E. Tatum for research on the genetics of microorganisms.


“Bacterial Protoplasts Induced by Penicillin.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 1956, vol. 42, no. 9, pp. 574–77.
“Linear Inheritance in Transductional Clones.” Genetics, 1956, vol. 41, no. 6, pp. 845–71.
“Protoplasts and L-type Growth of Escherichia coli.” Journal of Bacteriology, 1958, vol. 75, no. 2, pp. 143–60. (With St. Clair.)

Lederberg, Joshua

(1925–  ) geneticist; born in Montclair, N.J. He joined the University of Wisconsin (1947–58), moved to Stanford (1959–78), then became president of Rockefeller University (1978–90), where he remained as a professor. He shared one-half the 1958 Nobel Prize in physiology for his work as Edward Tatum's graduate student at Yale (1944–47), where he discovered that bacteria can reproduce sexually, and for his subsequent contributions to the science of bacterial genetics. His discovery of transduction in bacterial genes engendered the possibility of genetic engineering. He was a consultant for the U.S. space program, and wrote extensively on evolution and the future of humanity.
References in periodicals archive ?
(1.) "'Ome Sweet 'Omics--a genealogical treasury of words," by Joshua Lederberg, The Scientist, Apr 2, 2001.
What makes this difficult is just what Joshua Lederberg discovered: genes can be transferred horizontally from one bacterial species to another, as opposed to just vertically from ancestors.
King, literacy crusader Ruth Johnson Colvin, historian and journalist Paul Johnson and Nobel Prize-winning scientist Joshua Lederberg.
I recently had the privilege of a private meeting with Nobel Laureate Joshua Lederberg. The topic of conversation was the future of the FDA and the agency's Critical Path initiative.
Belvin Williams; Nobel Laureate Joshua Lederberg; executive editor of 60 Minutes Philip Scheffler; conductor of the Pennsylvania Ballet Beatrice Affron; professor of religious history Vincent Wimbus; and bestselling authors Faye and Jonathan KeUerman.
And we refer the avid reader and the medical scholar to the writings of Rockefeller University's distinguished emeritus president, Doctor Joshua Lederberg, who for many years has been telling us that the microbes have taken our best shot, and are now waging a massive counteroffensive against antibiotics and the other "wonder drugs" that, not so long ago, were believed to have accomplished the final solution to the microbe problem.
Tom Burroughs, Stacey Knobler, Joshua Lederberg, eds.
"While much of the tedious homework has yet to be completed, Stanford University's distinguished Professor of Genetics and Biology, Doctor Joshua Lederberg, feels that human clonal reproduction is only a few years away."
Together with Nobel Prize-winning microbiologist and Rockefeller University President Joshua Lederberg (also a CER member), Meselson became a grand defender of the Biological Weapons Convention against critics who claimed the near-cutoff of defensive research had left the nation critically undefended from biological attack.
Dr Joshua Lederberg, a Nobel laureate in biology who advises Washington on germ warfare, commented: "We have no idea what may have been retained, maliciously or inadvertently, in the laboratories of a hundred countries from the time that smallpox was a common disease." These would be the most likely sources of supply for potential bio-warfare terrorists, he added.
James Watson and Francis Crick, the biologists who discovered the double helix, would be considered, as would the geneticist Joshua Lederberg. So much is going on in science that there could be many more candidates, all working at the same time.
"We were encouraged by the two changes that already have been made to this committee's previous version of this legislation," said Nobel laureate Joshua Lederberg in his testimony to the committee.