Recorded: 16 Jan 2003
And then in ’91 [error, should be ’81] I did sort of a mini-sabbatical; it got a bit tiring sort of going back and forth. So I still theoretically employed at ICRF but I went to Cold Spring Harbor for six months. And continued, and really did work in the lab. And I was actually phenomenally lucky because it was one of those times. Science goes in waves, you know, there’s two or three years when you try to do an experiments and you can’t make it work, and it’s like climbing up a mountain And then finally you get technology working and you get six months or a year or just everything works. You know, you can do all the experiments you finish that series and then you have to start this long climb up again.
And that six months in Cold Spring Harbor—the first six months in Cold Spring Harbor was one of those times when everything worked. And it was lucky because Joe and I knew at that point that I wanted to move there permanently. But he was the scientific director and I didn’t want to go there because I was the director’s woman, you know, to be accepted for that reason. But the work went so well. And there wasn’t any difficulty and I was—I was, at the end of that time I was given a scientific appointment and I didn’t have to feel that it was, you know, for personal reason but because the science was actually terrific. So you know it might have been much more uncomfortable if it had been, you know, a year earlier where you’re still struggling with experiments you know. The scientist is no better worse it’s just there are different phases that you go through.
So I came back to London and packed up and then moved in. I think early ’92 [’82] to Cold Spring Harbor.
Mary-Jane Gething, biochemist is Head of the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Melbourne where she earned her Ph.D. in Biochemistry in 1974. Subsequently she went to Cambridge to do post-doctoral work.
In 1976, she moved to London to work on protein sequencing and in 1980, Gething and Joseph Sambrook received a NATO grant for travel to collaborate on virus research. She began working at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in 1982 where she continued her research of proteins. In 1985, Gething and Sambrook moved to Dallas to work at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. They moved back to Australia in 1994.
Her current research involves protein folding in the cell and the role of molecular chaperone BiP.