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Fellows Directory

Timothy Mitchison

Professor Timothy Mitchison FRS


Elected: 1997


Timothy Mitchison is a renowned biologist who — whilst working on his PhD — discovered the dynamic instability of microtubules, a fundamental aspect of cytoskeleton biology. Since then his studies have concentrated on the biochemistry, dynamics and spatial organisation of systems comprising microtubules, binding proteins and motors, and how they self-organise to promote cell division.

He also discovered that the interface between microtubules and chromosomes is dynamic, leading to the development of the current model for chromosome movement in mitosis. Timothy’s work has had an enormous impact on pharmacology and drug development, and in particular on treatments for cancer and inflammation.

Timothy is a founding member of the Harvard Medical School’s Department of Systems Biology and in 2010 served as President of the American Society for Cell Biology. He has been elected to membership of a number of prestigious societies, including the US National Academy of Sciences in 2014.