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Howard M. Temin Ph.D.

The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1975
Nobel Co-recipients David Baltimore, Renato Dulbecco
National Medal of Science - Biological Sciences 1992

Virologist. Interaction between tumor viruses and genetic material of cell. DNA provirus and RNA-directed DNA synthesis. Reverse Transcriptase. Intellectually courageous. Civic minded.

How fortunate to live in a country at a time and in a social class that has enabled us to realize our potential. Not been possible for many.


1. The Nobel Prize is also an honor for the American people, whose tax dollars and private contributions have supported my work.

2. Science is a communal effort - what we have accomplished has rested on the achievements of others, and the future and practical significance of our work will also be determined by the achievements of others.

3. I do not believe that infectious viruses cause most human cancers, but I do believe that viruses provide models of the processes involved in the etiology of human cancer.

4. Although science can be applied both for constructive and destructive purposes, we hope that science will be in the future, as are these Nobel Prizes, applied only for peaceful purposes.

5. We are, in fact, outraged that the one major measure available to prevent much cancer, namely, the cessation of cigarette smoking, has not been more widely adopted.

6. I should like to acknowledge support - financial: grants and awards; intellectual: professional colleagues; personal: family and others who have supported me.

7. Quotations About Temin
Dr. J. Michael Bishop, Nobelist 1989, recalled entering the field and watching "Howard go from a figure thought by some to be irresponsible and lax in interpreting data to be a lion overnight. It was quite a lesson for me in intellectual courage because he just toughed it."

8. Quotations About Temin
Dr. J. Michael Bishop, Nobelist 1989, "Dr. Temin has an exceptional, independent intellect and imagination that produces discoveries, and he produced them."

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Name: Howard Martin Temin
Birth: 10 December 1934, Philadelphia, PA, USA
Death: 9 February 1994, Madison, WI, USA
Institution: University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, USA
Award: "for their discoveries concerning the interaction between tumour viruses and the genetic material of the cell"
Subject: Genetics, medical oncology, virology
Portion of cash: 1/3
History of Discovery
Honoring Howard Temin
Thought Process
Doctoral Advisor: Renato Dulbecco