Paul Nurse: Biography highlights
Paul Nurse is a geneticist and cell biologist whose discoveries have helped to explain how the cell controls its cycle of growth and division.
Full biography of Paul Nurse
Paul Nurse’s background
Working in fission yeast, he showed that the cdc2 gene encodes a protein kinase, which ensures the cell is ready to copy its DNA and divide.
Paul’s findings have broader significance since errors in cell growth and division may lead to cancer and other serious diseases.
Paul’s contributions to cell biology and cancer research were recognised with a knighthood in 1999.
In addition, Paul’s endeavours relating to the discovery of cell cycle regulatory molecules saw him jointly awarded the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine in 2001.
Over the last thirty years, Paul has held many senior research leadership roles. In 2010, he was elected as President of the Royal Society for a five-year term.
Since 2011, he has been the Director and Chief Executive of the Francis Crick Institute, a London-based biomedical research institute.