Robert Roeder is honored for his pioneering contributions to the field of transcription of genetic information, a theme of central importance in the biology of eukaryotic (nucleated) cells. He is recognized especially for his description of the complex array of protein factors involved in transcription, notably his analysis of three RNA polymerases and the development of assays for their activities. He has continued to make significant contributions to the identification and cloning of eukaryotic transcription factors and to pursue the detailed characterization of the transcription apparatus and its regulation, work which has important applications in medical science.
Dr. Roeder was born in Indiana where he received his BA and MS, and earned a PhD in biochemistry at the University of Washington, Seattle, in 1969. His interest in transcription began when he was a graduate student. After postdoctoral studies at the Department of Embryology, Carnegie Institute of Washington, Baltimore, he joined the faculty of Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis. He is now at The Rockefeller University in New York, where he is Professor and Head of the Laboratory of Biochemical and Molecular Biology. He is a member of many scientific organizations including the National Academy of Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Among his many honors are the Lewis S. Rosenstiel Award for Distinguished Work in Basic Medical Sciences, the Passano Award, the General Motors Cancer Research Foundation's Alfred P. Sloan Prize, the Louisa Gross Horwitz Prize and the National Academy of Sciences - U.S. Steel Award in Molecular Biology.