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Fellows Directory

Matthew Meselson

Matthew Meselson

Professor Matthew Meselson ForMemRS

Foreign Member

Elected: 1984


Matthew Meselson is a geneticist and molecular biologist best known for his research on how DNA replicates, recombines and is repaired in cells. Matthew also discovered the mechanism through which cells are able to recognise and destroy DNA that is not their own.

He uncovered the process of DNA mismatch repair, which allows cells to fix mistakes in their DNA. Based on these findings, Matthew now conducts research that aims to understand the causes and control of ageing. In addition, he revealed that cells recognise their own DNA by labelling it with methyl groups; non-methylated foreign DNA is then attacked and destroyed.

Matthew’s interests also extend to the control of biological and chemical weapons and he has served as a consultant to a number of US government agencies. He has received numerous awards for his research in molecular biology and genetics, including the 2004 Albert Lasker Award for Special Achievement in Medical Science and the 2008 Mendel Medal of the UK Genetics Society.

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