Nobel winner Joshua Lederberg dead at 82

Feb. 5, 2008 at 10:25 PM

NEW YORK, Feb. 5 (UPI) -- Nobel Prize-winning scientist Joshua Lederberg, a pioneer in the field of bacterial genetics, has died in New York at the age of 82.

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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