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Books, Journals, New Media
November 14, 2001

Recombinant DNAThe Recombinant DNA Controversy: A Memoir: Science, Politics, and the Public Interest 1974-1981

Author Affiliations

Harriet S.MeyerMD, Contributing EditorDavid H.MorseMS, Journal Review EditorRobertHoganMD, adviser for new media


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JAMA. 2001;286(18):2331-2332. doi:10.1001/jama.286.18.2331-JBK1114-4-1

When biomedical science lost its innocence, Donald S. Fredrickson, MD, was at helm of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). After 21 years doing research on plasma lipoproteins at the National Heart Institute and a brief stint as president of the Institute of Medicine, Fredrickson was called to lead the world's preeminent biomedical research institution just as it was being dragged into the scientific, public, and political furor over recombinant DNA research.

Within the next several years the relationship between science and the public would be transformed, and biomedical scientists would confront unfamiliar perplexities such as patents and proprietary commercial information. By the time Donald Fredrickson left the NIH, the landscape had changed, and he had played a crucial role in creating the new world of biomedical research. The Recombinant DNA Controversy is his account of that momentous time.

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