Lederberg, a distinguished molecular geneticist whose achievements helped lay the foundation for the current revolution in molecular biology and biotechnology, died of pneumonia Saturday at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, The Rockefeller University of New York said Monday in a release. Lederberg served as president of the university from 1978 to 1990.
Lederberg, born in Montclair, N.J., in 1925 and raised in New York City, received a Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1958 for his work on the organization of genetic material in bacteria. The New York Times said his discovery that bacteria engage in a form of sexual reproduction created new understandings of how bacteria evolve and acquire new traits.
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