Charles M. Rice
The information listed below is current as of the date the transcript was finalized.
Abstract of Interview
Charles Rice grew up in California. His father was an insurance adjuster and his mother a housewife. He intended to be veterinarian, so he entered University of California, Davis where he majored in zoology while there he worked for Dennis Barrett and spent summers at Woods Hole Marine Biology Laboratory. He loved Spanish language and literature; after graduation he traveled in Latin America before he returned to be a teaching assistant for the Physiology Course at Woods Hole.
For graduate school Rice decided on the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), where he worked in James Strauss’ lab on RNA viruses. He continued in that lab as a postdoc, collaborating with Henry Huang on Sindbis virus and beginning to work on the yellow fever virus vaccine strain.
After a mini sabbatical with Lynn Dalgarno in Australia, Rice accepted a position at Washington University in St. Louis. There he continued to collaborate with Henry Huang and Sondra Schlesinger. He had fewer administrative duties than at other institutions; and a broader swath of science and scientists. He feels he is still learning how to manage his lab, but hopes to develop his students into independent and creative thinkers. His lab continues his work in RNA viruses and has recently begun work on hepatitis C. Rice’s overall objective is to learn how to inhibit virus replication without harming the hosts.
Rice discusses the influence of Caltech. He explains his lab composition, his management style, and how his collaborations enriched his science. He loves bench work but is not so fond of administrative duties. He does not like fashionable science or having to spend so much time seeking grants and believes that the current discouraging state of funding agencies is turning away good people. He stresses importance of basic science. He may work more intensively on hepatitis C and thinks Sindbis has other uses as model system.
|1974||University of California, Davis||BS||Zoology|
|1981||California Institute of Technology||PhD||Biochemistry|
California Institute of Technology
Australian National University
Washington University School of Medicine
|1975 to 1977||
California State Scholarship
|1975 to 1979||
Earle C. Anthony Fellowship
|1975 to 1980||
Graduate Research Assistantship, California Institute of Technology
National Institutes of Health Predoctoral Traineeship
|1980 to 1981||
California Institute of Technology Fellowship
|1981 to 1982||
Gosney Research Fellowship
|1986 to 1990||
Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences Award
Table of Contents
Grew up in California. Planned to become veterinarian.
Entered University of California, Davis, majored in zoology. Biology class with Dennis Barrett. Summers at Woods Hole Marine Biology Laboratory. Experiences in Latin America after graduation. Teaching assistant at Woods Hole.
Entered James Strauss’ lab at California Institute of Technology. Thesis work on virion envelope proteins. Continued postdoctoral work in Strauss’ lab. Collaborated with Henry Huang on Sindbis virus and sequenced yellow fever virus as model system for other flaviviruses. Australia sabbatical.
Accepted position at Washington University in St. Louis. Lab management. Day to day activity. Hepatitis C research
Loves bench work. Lab administration and teaching. Future plans.