Peter R. Arvan
The information listed below is current as of the date the transcript was finalized.
Abstract of Interview
Peter R. Arvan begins the interview discussing his childhood in Queens, New York. Arvan’s family background played an important role in his development, including his mother’s escape from Nazi Germany as a teenager. Although his parents were extremely interested in his education, there never existed any particular emphasis on science; his movement into a scientific career could have been altered had he found any inspiration or an inspirational figure in the humanities instead. Arvan’s decision to pursue science developed from his involvement in the National Science Foundation Summer Program in Biochemistry before his senior year in high school. Arvan returned to this program as an advanced student the following summer and even as an instructor while he was an undergraduate; this program was extremely influential in his academic development. Arvan joined Efraim Racker’s laboratory at Cornell University and then pursued his MD/PhD at Yale University working in the research laboratory of J. David Castle. After one year at the University of North Carolina for residency, Arvan returned to Yale under the Research Residency Program where he pursued research in Howard Rasmussen’s laboratory. Throughout the interview Arvan discussed the difficulties of scientific funding, the fortuitous events which have shaped his scientific thinking, and the difficulties inherent in the MD/PhD program.
|1984||Yale University School of Medicine||PhD||Cell Biology|
Harvard Medical School
Beth Israel Hospital Boston
Phi Beta Kappa
Medical Scientist Training Program, Yale University School of Medicine
Research Residency Program, Yale University School of Medicine
|1988 to 1992||
Pew Scholars Program in the Biomedical Sciences
Table of Contents
Family background and parents education. Mother's escape as a teenager from Nazi Germany. Religious experiences. Different experiences among his older sister, his older brother and himself. Elementary School.
Growing up in New York City. Difficulties in early education stemming from skipping a grade. National Science Foundation Summer Program in Biochemistry.
Choosing and attending Cornell University. Working in Efraim Racker's laboratory. Mark Spector's fraud in the Racker laboratory. General issues of scientific fraud and ethics. Protein secretion mechanism hypotheses in the early 1970s.
Yale University. Unhappiness during first year. Interest in joint programs.
Beth Israel Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts. Discussion of tenure possibilities. Difference between Beth Israel and Harvard Medical School.
Interest in physiology and pathophysiology. Importance of endocrinology. Ability to focus research.
Costs of working with radiation. Affiliation with Harvard Medical School Thoughts about future research.
Cell Biology. PhD. Work with J. David Castle. Experience at University of North Carolina. Constitutive and regulatory secretion pathways.