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Fellows Directory

Jean Beggs

Credit: Antonia Reeve

Professor Jean Beggs CBE FRS


Elected: 1998


Jean Beggs is a geneticist whose development of a shuttle vector for propagating genes in both the bacterium Escherichia coli and budding yeast allowed highly efficient gene cloning in yeast and helped to pave the way for the development of recombinant DNA technology for eukaryotic organisms.

Jean has also used yeast to study the key proteins and mechanisms involved in the splicing of messenger RNA — the editing process which removes the parts of genes that do not code for proteins, prior to protein synthesis.

She has received many accolades in recognition of her work, including, in 2003 the Society’s Gabor Medal — which recognises interdisciplinary work linked to the life sciences — and the Novartis Medal and Prize of the Biochemical Society in 2004. Jean is also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh and was named a CBE in 2006. She is currently the Royal Society Darwin Trust Research Professor.

Professional positions

Professor of Molecular Biology, Royal Society Darwin Trust Research Professor, Wellcome Centre For Cell Biology, University of Edinburgh

Interests and expertise

Subject groups


Chromatin immunoprecipitation, RNA splicing, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Transcription activators


  • Gabor Medal

    For her contributions to the isolation and manipulation of recombinant DNA molecules in a eukaryotic organism, adding a new dimension to molecular and cellular biology.