Jeffery D. Molkentin
The information listed below is current as of the date the transcript was finalized.
Abstract of Interview
Jeffery D. Molkentin was born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the elder of two brothers. Molkentin's mother worked at Briggs & Stratton; his maternal grandfather and his stepfather (from whom he has his surname) played significant roles in his life. Molkentin had, according to his own account, a fairly typical childhood in Milwaukee. It was not until his freshman year of high school that he became very interested in his own education; it was then that he began to excel scholastically. Upon graduation Molkentin chose to attend Marquette University, where his interest in medicine led him down the pre-medical path, ultimately to the University of Wisconsin Medical School. While in medical school, though, he came to realize that the realities of being a doctor did not appeal to him, but that the science of medicine and scientific practice did. As a result, he entered the laboratory of Lee Ann Baxter Lowe at the Blood Center of Southeastern Wisconsin, and completed his doctoral degree with Bruce E. Markham at the Medical College of Wisconsin, where his research focused on transcriptional regulation of the alpha-myosin heavy chain gene in heart muscle. From there he moved on to a postdoctoral fellowship to study transcription mechanisms in myogenesis with Eric Olson at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. At the end of the interview Molkentin discusses his family and his attempts to balance his family with his career, especially with regard to accepting a position at the University of Cincinnati. There, he has pursued research in developmental biology on the molecular genetic events in heart and skeletal muscle growth. He discusses his goals for his laboratory, as well as his future research on the heart and heart disease. Additionally, he relates his thoughts on broad topics such as research collaborations between academia and industry, the impact of technology on research, creativity in science, and privatization of research, among other topics. Molkentin also talks about his laboratory in depth, including his management style, his criteria for prioritizing his research projects, and the gender make up of his lab. He concludes his interview by discussing the impact of the Pew Scholars Program in the Biomedical Sciences award on his work, and other aspects of being a principal investigator.
|1994||Medical College of Wisconsin||PhD|
Blood Center of Southeast Wisconsin
University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
Graduated Magna Cum Laude, Marquette University
|1992 to 1994||
American Heart Association Pre-Doctoral Fellowship
Babush Graduate Research Award, Medical College of Wisconsin
|1994 to 1997||
NIH Postdoctoral Research Fellowship
P.D. Cain American Heart Research Award
Molecular Mechanisms of Disease award (C. Carrington Memorial Prize
Louis N. & Arnold M. Katz Award in Cardiovascular Medicine (AHA)
|1998 to 2002||
Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences
Winner, AHA council of Basic Science Research Prize
Table of Contents
Growing up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Family background. Brother. Mother. Childhood experiences. Early schooling.
Defining moment during freshman year of high school. Attends Marquette University. Parental expectations. Learns how to think and study while attending a Catholic high school. Decision to pursue medicine. Attends the University of Wisconsin Medical School. Reasons for leaving medical school. Religion. First research experience in Lee Ann Baxter-Lowe's laboratory at the Blood Center of Southeastern Wisconsin. Meets future wife. Attends graduate school at Medical College of Wisconsin in Bruce E. Markham's laboratory. Baxter--Lowe's management style. Markham's management style. Doctoral work in transcriptional regulation of the alpha-myosin heavy chain gene in heartmuscle. Postdoctoral fellowship under Eric N. Olson at the University of Texas, Southwestern Medical Center. Olson's management style.
Balancing family and career. Postdoctoral research on transcription mechanisms in myogenesis. Variety of management styles in science. Accepts a position at the University of Cincinnati. Setting up laboratory. Current research in developmental biology on the molecular genetic events in heart and skeletal muscle growth. Future research on the heart and heart disease. Research collaborations between academia and industry. Professional and personal goals. Funding history. Clinical applications. Teaching responsibilities. Administrative duties. Writing journal articles. Grant-writing process. Laboratory management style. Love of reading.
Being a principal investigator. Patents. Prioritizing his research projects. National scientific agenda. Role of the scientist in educating the public about science. Privatization of research. Gender. Percentage of women as graduate students and principal investigators. Competition and collaboration in science. Tenure at the University of Cincinnati. Foreign students as science graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. Pew Scholars Program in the Biomedical Sciences.