Charles M. Rubin
The information listed below is current as of the date the transcript was finalized.
Abstract of Interview
Charles M. Rubin grew up in Deal, New Jersey, the second of four children. His father was a dentist, his mother a secretary; both are Conservative Jews. He attended public school, which he liked and in which he did well. He was especially interested in science and mathematics, enjoying problem-solving. Racial tensions and riots at his high school in Asbury Park, however, framed much of his high school experience. Rubin entered the University of Pennsylvania for his undergraduate degree. He spent summers as a counselor at a camp for handicapped children; he continued to visit the children during the school year; and when he was in medical school, he worked in the camp infirmary. Inspired by Bertram Lubin's course in genetics, he decided to enter medicine. In his last year of college he was excited by C. Everett Koop's separation of Siamese twins at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. He studied chromosome abnormalities in the lab of William Mellman, conducting research on spina bifida; he found (and still finds) gratification in helping sick children. He was admitted to Tufts University School of Medicine, about which he discusses his medical school classes and his interest in academic medicine. He took electives at three different children's hospitals, learned the health needs of inner-city children, and decided to specialize in pediatric oncology. Rubin did subspecialty training in pediatric hematology/oncology at the University of Minnesota. Studying cytogenetics with Diane C. Arthur increased his interest in research, and he began studying chromosome damage in recipients of chemotherapy and radiation; Rubin's study of retinoblastoma recurrence has since led to more aggressive treatment. Rubin accepted a fellowship at the University of Chicago to acquire more training in research; there he found a clinical focus in Janet D. Rowley's lab. He began conducting further research on chromosome abnormalities and studying large pieces of DNA with pulsed field gel electrophoresis. Rubin ends the interview with a discussion of his marriage and family and the challenge of balancing family and career. He talks about how national treatment protocols are created; about how research affects clinical practice; and about his shift away from research toward practice. He explains his teaching responsibilities and his clinical duties and talks about how he started the Joint Pediatric/Medical Cancer Risk Clinic. He finishes with a discussion of the genetic component in cancer and the limits of gene therapy.
|1975||University of Pennsylvania||BA||Biology|
University of Minnesota
University of Chicago
Chicago Children's Memorial Hospital
Michael Reese Hospital
University of Chicago Hospitals
Phi Beta Kappa
Summa Cum Laude
Alpha Omega Alpha
Special fellow, Leukemia Society of American
Leukemia Research Foundation Award
Schweppe Foundation Career Development Award
|1988 to 1992||
Pew Scholars Program in the Biomedical Sciences
Table of Contents
Childhood in DealNew Jersey. Parents, grandparents, brothers, and extended family. Jewish upbringing. Riots of the 1960s and ethnic clannishness. Early education. Brothers' careers. Attends Asbury Park High School. School's diverse ethnic mix. Racial tensions and riots in Asbury Park. Surfing and swimming. Friends in high school. Participates in anti-Vietnam War protests. Accepted at the University of Pennsylvania. Spends summers as a counselor ata camp for handicapped children. Visits the children during the year. During medical school, works in the camp infirmary.
Undergraduate years at University of Pennsylvania. Volunteer work in children's hospitals. Decision to enter medicine. Inspired by Bertram Lubin's course in Genetics. Excited by C. Everett Koop's separation of Siamese twins at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Studies chromosome abnormalities in the lab of William Mellman. Conducts research on spina bifida. Finds gratification in helping sick children. Applies to medical school. Admitted to Tufts University School of Medicine. Undergraduate classwork. Medical school Classes. Interest in academic medicine. Financing medical school. Takes electives at three different children's hospitals. Learns the health needs of inner-city children. Decides to focus on pediatric oncology. How childhood cancers differ from adult. Social life in medical school. Subspecialty training in pediatric hematology/oncology at the University of Minnesota. Studies cytogenetics with Diane C. Arthur. Growing interest in research. Studying chromosome damage in recipients of chemotherapy and radiation.
Effects of cancer treatments. Study of retinoblastoma recurrence leads to more aggressive treatment. How national treatment protocols are created. How research affects clinical practice. Shift away from research toward practice. Accepts a fellowship at the University of Chicago to acquire more training in Research. The strong clinical focus of Janet D. Rowley's lab. Further researchon chromosome abnormalities. Retrospective studies and the need for prospective studies. Studying large pieces of DNA with pulsed field gel electrophoresis. Marriage and family. Challenge of balancing family and career. Teaching responsibilities. Clinical duties. Starting the Joint Pediatric/Medical Cancer Risk Clinic. Genetic component in cancer. Limits of gene therapy.