David Lane on Political Atmosphere at CSHL
  David Lane     Biography    
Recorded: 04 Jun 2001

When I started to make these monoclonals—and that was very exciting because Cold Spring Harbor realized that this was going to be important and I was the first person to get that technique to work here. A number of things arose out of that, there was a kind of internal competition amongst scientists. One of the other scientists, I felt was trying to encroach on my territory a bit, so that was a little sensitive. Watson wanted me to stay on and I had this permanent job in England to go back to, we had a discussion, and Jim was pretty tough. He basically said, you should stay here. I said no, so then his first response was that I was a good negotiator and I wanted a bigger salary, so he offered me a very big salary, even now I remember! And you know, I should have stayed actually, but I was very, sort of young and didn’t think about it, I decided I really wanted to go back to this job. And he told me well that’s pretty much the end of my career, that was a very poor decision, but it was okay.

David Lane, immunologist, is the Director of the Cancer Research UK Transformation Research Group at the University of Dundee, Department of Surgery and Molecular Oncology at the Ninewells Hospital and Medical School in Dundee, Scotland. Lane founded the Department of Surgery and Oncology in the University’s Medical School with Alfred Cucheiri, one of the pioneers in minimal access ("keyhole") surgery. Currently on leave from the University of Dundee, he the Executive Director of the IMCB in Singapore. Lane is also the founder and Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board of Cyclacel, a Dundee based biotechnology company now listed on the NASDAQ. Shortly after receiving his Ph.D., he was recruited by Joe Sambrook to work at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory with the Tumor Virus Group in the 70’s, where he also completed one of his books on antibodies. In 2000, Lane was knighted by Queen Elizabeth of England for his many contributions to science. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of London, the Academy of Medical Sciences, and the University College London.