Title and Description Page
Childhood and Early Education 1
Discussion of family life. Boyhood activities and interests. The role of religion in Sharp family. Important teachers during early education. Description of current extended family. Discussion of segregation during youth.
College and Graduate Studies 10
Attending Union College. Financial situation during college years. Marriage to Ann Holcombe. Discussion of influential faculty members at Union College. Attending graduate school at the University of Illinois. Life at Union College. Research under Victor A. Bloomfield at Illinois. Working at Caltech in Norman Davidson's lab. Mapping cellular genes. The significance of Ronald Davis on Sharp's life.
The Move to Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory 25
Moving to James Watson's virology lab. Description of a peer group with Sharp's interests. Birth of second child. Being selected to work at MIT's Center for Cancer Research. Discussion about molecular biology's academic identity. Working with Joe Sambrook. Studying the adenovirus in London. Description of his work at CSHL.
The Center for Cancer Research 36
Starting a lab. Group meetings at MIT. Salvador E. Luria's personality. Applying for grants at MIT. Sharp's identity at the Center for Cancer Research. The history of biotechnology.
The Discovery of RNA Splicing 44
Description of academic environment before splicing discovery. Working with Jane S. Flint and Susan M. Berget. How RNA splicing was discovered. The academic community's reaction to the splicing discovery. The significance of viruses. MIT and the place of biological sciences. MIT's relationship with the Whitehead Institute. The academic environment surrounding MIT. The Asilomar Conference.
Entrepreneurial Ventures 53
Looking back at the biology community around MIT. The International Nickel Company and its future. The creation of Biogen, Inc. Organizing labs in Geneva and at Cambridge. Sharp's relationship with Walter Gilbert. Working at Biogen. Biogen's structure. The board of directors at Biogen. The rules at MIT during the late 1970s. Becoming director of the Center for Cancer Research. Discouraging periods at Biogen. Walter Gilbert as the CEO of Biogen. Walter Gilbert's personality.
Further Reflections on RNA Splicing 69
Post-discovery study of RNA splicing. Conclusions from Tom Maniatis' lab. Working with Paula J. Grabowski. The role of "snurps" in splicing. Robert G. Roeder's development of the first in vitro reaction. Competition in the splicing research field. The Center for Cancer Research's relationship to Ajinomoto USA, Inc. Sharp's business relationship with Bristol-Myers Squibb Company. Discussion of Sharp's research beginning in the 1980s.
The Nobel Prize 77
Other Nobel Prize winners in Sharp's field. Soon after winning the Nobel Prize. The significance of the Prize to Sharp. Nobel Laureates at MIT. RNAi research. Thomas Tuschl's work with RNAi. The significance of RNAi in C-elegans. Fraud charges against David Baltimore. Ivan R. Cottrell's donation to David Baltimore and MIT. The results of the fraud controversy.
Sharp's Influence on MIT 93
Progression through MIT's administration. His brief presidency of MIT. The McGovern Institute and the current state of Biogen, Inc. The neuroscience programs outside of MIT.