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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

James Thomson elected to society with highest honors

Members from the National Academy of Sciences elected UW-Madison stem-cell researchers, WARF member and anatomy professor James Thomson into the society Tuesday.  

 

Seventy-two other competitive scientists were selected to join the group along with Thompson. 

The NAS is a society of scholars who dedicate themselves to helping the future of science, technology and engineering research. More than 200 of its 2,100 members are Nobel Peace Prize winners. 

 

According to WARF Managing Director Carl Gulbrandsen, Thomson is a pioneer in his field and was the first to successfully culture and maintain human embryonic stem cells.  

 

He is really the reason why UW-Madison is the center of the universe for stem-cell research,"" Gulbrandsen said.  

 

Thomson's lab is involved in producing the first completely defined medium that did not have other species' proteins in it. They focus on the study of embryonic stem-cells in general and how it is possible for stem cells to replicate any type of cell in the body. Last year, Thomson and Junying Yu discovered the genetic reprogramming of human skin-cells.  

 

Earlier this year, Thomson was appointed director of regenerative biology at the Morgridge Institute for Research.  

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Gulbrandsen said the distinction of being invited to the NAS is long overdue but well deserved. 

 

Scientists from a large spectrum of fields recognize Thomson's research.  

 

""He is in the top echelon of having citations to his papers,"" Gulbrandsen said. ""He is brilliant, a very focused individual and committed researcher.""  

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