The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation proudly presents the 2010 Genetics Prize to Gerald R. Fink, Ph.D., a founder of modern yeast genetics and a leader in the use of model-organism genetics to study diverse biological problems.
Fink developed a system that allows insertions of laboratory-modified-DNA molecules into their natural locations in the yeast chromosomes. His breakthrough technique enabled the genetic dissection of basic cellular processes and the manufacture of drugs and vaccines in yeast, as well as inspiring similar approaches to the genetic manipulation of diverse organisms.
Fink applied the "awesome power" of the new yeast genetics to discover how genomic information is transcribed, recombined, suppressed, transposed, and translated. In his own laboratory, he trained a legion of leading geneticists to apply yeast genetics to advance biomedical science, and inspired many more to do so through his teaching and writing.