Recorded: 01 May 2000
Amar: There’s no way I could have been that [successful]—if you call that a success without these wonderful colleagues. It’s just hard to imagine. It was this synergy, this thinking process. Because there were some papers—joint papers—where my name is there and I didn’t do anything for the paper. And in one case I am the senior author. So it was a very unique situation at a place like Cold Spring Harbor and there are a lot of other kinds of stories, where if any thing gets done and anyone is successful, right away there are a lot of problems.
But I remember the plant people told me that Bruce Stillman used to tell other people, “Why can’t you be like the yeast people?” That’s an honor. Also I want to add- one thing that we did was left the legacy of yeast—I brought Dave Beach to the group and many other wonderful post docs come, and Kim Nasymth spent a year in our lab. Now lots of people—Bruce Stillman—is doing yeast, and Mike Wigler is… I think that we all should take pride in that we brought yeast genetics to molecular biology; and so now it’s not “yeast” or “non-yeast,” but from that group it was an attractive feature for other people to come and learn the discipline. And I’m very pleased with that.
Amar Klar and Jeff Strathern worked together in the Cold Spring Harbor Yeast group from 1977 till 1984 where they made outstanding discoveries about the mechanism of mating type switching in yeast.
Amar Klar, is a leading yeast geneticist, concerned with the molecular biology of gene silencing and mating-type switching. Klar came from India to the University of Wisconsin in 1975 to receive his Ph.D. in bacteriology. From 1977 to 1984, he worked with Jeff Strathern and Jim Hicks in the Cold Spring Harbor Yeast Group studying the mechanism of mating type switching. Klar served as Director of the Delbruck laboratory from 1985 to 1988.
He left Cold Spring Harbor to join the ABL-Basic Research Program as Head of the Developmental Genetics Section. In 1999, Klar joined the National Cancer Institute Center for Cancer Research and is now a Principal Investigator in the Gene Regulation and Chromosome Biology Laboratory at NCI-CCR.
Jeffrey Strathern, a leading yeast geneticist, obtained his Ph.D. from the Molecular Biology Institute at the University of Oregon in 1977 and then moved to Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, where he became a Senior Staff Member with the yeast genetics laboratory.
In 1984, he joined the ABL-Basic Research Program at the NCI-FCRDC. His research remains centered on aspects of gene regulation and genetic recombination as revealed by studies in yeast. In 1999, Strathern joined the Division of Basic Sciences, NCI. Strathern worked together with Amar Klar and Jim Hicks in the Cold Spring Harbor Yeast group from 1977 to 1984 where they made outstanding discoveries about the mechanism of mating type switching in yeast.