David Baltimore: Bio, American Biologist & Nobel Prize Winner

David Baltimore an American Biologist born on March 07th, 1938, went to high school at the Jackson Memorial Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine, where his interest in Biology emerged. His first research there and connection with research biologists at work turn him to be a renowned Biologist.

Besides being a renowned biologist, he is a university administrator and biology professor at the California Institute of Technology, where he occupied the position of president from 1997 to 2006. From 19901991, he was a president of Rockefeller University and in 2007 was a president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

David Baltimore American Biologist
David Baltimore American Biologist

He taught and trained many doctoral students and post-doctor fellows, producing outstanding performers in science. Similarly, he is a Board sponsor for the ‘Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists,’ and to the Science Philanthropy Alliance, he is a consultant.

Quick Facts of David Baltimore

Full Name

David Baltimore

Nick Name


Birth Date

March 7, 1938


83 years old



Birth Place

New York, New York, United States

Father’s Name

Richard Baltimore

Mother’s Name

Gertrude Lipschitz


Robert S. Baltimore


Baltimore Classification


Lauren Rachel Baltimore


Orthodox Jew






Noble Prize in Physiology or Medicine

Canada Gairdner International Award

NAS Award in Molecular Biology

Warren Alpert Foundation Prize


Molecular Cell Biology


The Rockefeller University

John L Miller North High School

Swarthmore College

Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Physician, Virologist, and Microbiologist

Marital Status



Alice S. Huang

Net Worth

$2.23 Million

Social Media


Early life and Education

New York City was the born place of David Baltimore. He is the son of Gertrude (Lipschitz) and Richard Baltimore. His mother was an atheist, and a father was an orthodox Jew. Baltimore spent his early childhood in the Queens neighborhoods of Forest Hills and Rego Park, Queens.

Gertrude didn’t like the place and found it inadequate, so they moved to Great suburban Neck, New York. In 1956, the Biologist graduated from Great Neck High School and earned his interest in biology to a high school summer spent at the Jackson Laboratory’s Summer Student Program in Bar Harbor, Maine.

Talking about his education, he went to Swarthmore College in 1956. Likewise, he completed his education in 1960 with great honors. Between his junior years and sophomore there he used to spend summer at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories. There under the influence of George Streisinger, he drew his interest in molecular biology.

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He joined the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) ‘s graduate program in 1960 in biophysics. Baltimore spent two years there, and later he moved to Albert Einstein Medical College. He planned to take an animal virus course at Cold Spring Harbor under Richard Franklin and Edward Simon.

In 1965, he took a research associate at the Salk Institute of Biological Studies, working together with Renato Dulbecco. This is where he met his soulmate Dr. Alice S. Huang and got together. Similarly, in 1972, He was offered a position of a full professorship at MIT. Under Salvador Luria, he joined the staff of the MIT Center for Cancer Research in 1974.

Career and research

At Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, Baltimore investigated poliovirus RNA. With his associate, they discovered the mechanism of proteolytic cleavage of viral polyprotein precursors, focusing on the importance of proteolytic processing in synthesizing eukaryotic proteins.

Along with his wife Alice, he carried out key experiments on defective interfering particles and pseudo viral types. In this experiment, he found out that polio produced its viral proteins as a single large polyprotein, which was afterward administered into individual functional peptides.

In 1968, he was hired by Salvador Luria, a Nobel laureate at MIT in the biology department. Again, in 1970, Baltimore and his associate Howard Temin made independent and simultaneous reverse transcriptase discovery in retroviruses then tumor viruses, which is considered a foundation for retrovirology and cancer biology.

David Baltimore Research and Experiments
David Baltimore Research and Experiments

In February 1975, Baltimore gave Paul Berg and Maxine Singer a hand to organize Asilomar Conference on Recombinant DNA. The purpose of the seminar was to discuss the possible danger of new biotechnology, possible experiments by DNA advisory committees.

Baltimore was very much aware of the changes going to happen in the laboratory. The Asilomar process opened up the new powers that modern biology can have to the world that none were convinced of earlier.

In 1973 he became one of the early faculty members at MIT Center for Cancer, newly organized. In 1975 when he was just 37, he won the Nobel prize to discover reverse transcriptase. After this, he arranged to investigate immunology and virology in his laboratory.

In 1982, Baltimore was requested to help setting up a self-governed research institute for basic biomedical research. The institute was founded by businessman and philanthropist Edwin C. ‘Jack’ Whitehead. Later, he led the institute and turned it into one of the world’s top research institutes.

David Baltimore President of Rockefeller University

On July 01st, 1990, Baltimore served as the director of the Whitehead Institute, he was appointed the sixth president of Rockefeller University in New York City. He then moved his team of researchers to New York and worked on virology and cellular regulation.

On December 03rd, 1991, he resigned and remained on the Rockefeller University faculty and continued his research. By 1997, he accepted the position of President of the California Institute of Technology. Likewise, he was also awarded by U.S. President Bill Clinton the National Medal of Science for his numerous contributions.

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Similarly, in October 2005, he resigned from his position at Caltech. He worked with other scientists on using new genome-editing techniques to alter inheritable human DNA. He has influenced national policy concerning the AIDS epidemic. In 1996, he became the head of the National Institute of Health.

Awards and Honors

For his Immunology and Microbiology contribution, he was awarded Eli Lilly, Warren Triennial Prize, and Gustav Stern Award in Virology in 1971. He won the Canada Gairdner International Award and NAS Award in Molecular Biology and Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1974

The Biologist won the Nobel prize and Renato Dulbecco and Howard Temin for their discoveries on tumor viruses and the genetic material of the cell. Following was the Membership of European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO Member) award in 1983.

Baltimore receiving National Award
Baltimore receiving National Award

He received the Golden Plate Award of the American Academy of Achievement in 1986. Likewise, Baltimore won the National Medal of Science in 1999 and 2000, and he got an annual award Warren Alpert Foundation Award.

Controversies of David Baltimore

In 1989, Baltimore’s associate Thereza Imanishi-Kari coauthored a 1986 paper on immunology, was convicted for falsifying the data. However, in 1996, Imanishi-Kari was revealed innocent for not finding any wrongdoings. But Baltimore had to withdraw the paper and resign from his position.

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Again, in 1998, Daniel Kevles, a professor of Humanities and scientific policy at the California Institute of Technology who investigated the case, intensively wrote ‘The Baltimore Case, A Trial of Politics, Science and Character.’ He supported Baltimore and Imanishi-Kari and raised his voice for the injustice they got.

In October 2005, Baltimore resigned from Caltech. However, he was not sure that the position given to Luk Van Parijs was the right decision. Upon his request, MIT investigated and fired Paris for research misconduct, for which Parijs accepted his deeds.

Personal Life

Baltimore wed to Dr. Alice S. Huang in 1968. She is an American biologist who is an expert in microbiology and virology. Similarly, Alice is a senior member of the Biology faculty at the California Institute of Technology. She served as President of AAAS during the 2010-2011 term.

David Baltimore delivering Speech
David Baltimore delivering Speech

Dr. Alice was born in China and settled in the U.S. in 1949. They got one daughter, Lauren Rachel Baltimore.

Net Worth of David Baltimore

David Baltimore, the American Biologist, made more than 11 trades of the Regulus Therapeutics Inc stock since 2011 and found that he sold 3,700 units of RGLS stock worth $569,541 on May 31st, 2017.

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The highest stock he traded was on December 10th, 2012, exercising 16,000 units on RGLS. At last, his estimated net worth is $2.23 Million.

David Baltimore Quotes

  • I think we can allow the therapeutic uses of nuclear transplant technology, which we call cloning, without running the danger of actually having live human beings born.
  • The argument has been made in Congress that it is a slippery slope if you allow therapeutically, what people are calling therapeutic cloning, then you will get reproductive cloning.
  • There is actually a fair amount of money being put behind science today.
  • I think they are looking for publicity and they are looking for a name for themselves.
  • When are we going to say cancer is cured? I’m not sure when that will happen if that will happen because cancer is a very slippery disease and it involves a vast number of cells in the body and those cells are continually mutating.
  • There is actually a fair amount of money being put behind science today.


1. Who is David Baltimore?

David Baltimore is an American biologist, university administrator, and Nobel laureate in Physiology or Medicine also a professor of biology at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech).

2.What did David Baltimore study?

David Baltimore studied viruses and the immune system in the US during the twentieth century.

3. Is Baltimore a Xconomist?

Baltimore is a member of the USA Science and Engineering Festival’s Advisory Board and an Xconomist.

4. Who did David Baltimore Marry to?

David Baltimore married Alice Huang in October 1968; they first met while working together at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies.

5. What is the importance of Baltimore research?

Baltimore also conducted research that led to an understanding of the interaction between viruses and the genetic material of the cell.

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