H. Robert Horvitz
H. Robert Horvitz is the David H. Koch Professor of Biology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he joined the faculty in 1978. He is also a Member of the MIT McGovern Institute for Brain Research, a Member of the MIT Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research and an Investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. He discovered key genes that control cell death (apoptosis) in the microscopic roundworm Caenorhabditis elegans. Nearly identical genes have been identified in other animals, and human counterparts are being pursued as possible therapeutic targets for a variety of human diseases. For this work and for his studies concerning organ development in C. elegans, Horvitz shared the 2002 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. President of the Genetics Society of America in 1995, he is also a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Medicine, the American Philosophical Society, the Royal Society of London, and the Physiological Society (London). Horvitz serves as the chair of the Board of Trustees for Society for Science and the Public.