David Baltimore ( born March 7, 1938 in New York, USA) is an American virologist. He is one of the pioneers of genetic engineering and works at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech ).
Baltimore attended high school in Great Neck, New York. He studied biology at Swarthmore College (Bachelor 1960), was 1960/61, at MIT (MIT ) and then up at the Rockefeller University, where he received his doctorate in 1963. As a post-doc, he was at MIT, the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx and the Salk Institute. From 1968 he was an associate professor at MIT, where he became professor in 1972. In 1982, he was there founding director of the Whitehead Institute, where he remained until 1990, when he became president of Rockefeller University. In 1991 he was in the course of forgery allegations (which later could not be corroborated ) by a professor at MIT ( Thereza Imanishi - Kari ), which he strongly supported in the affair and with whom he published together also at MIT, was forced to resign as president. He was formerly a professor, but moved in 1994 back to MIT. In 1997, he became president of Caltech, an office which he held until 2005. He is currently a professor at a laboratory named after him at Caltech.
In 1975, he received together with Renato Dulbecco and Howard Temin M. the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine "for their discoveries concerning the interaction between tumor viruses and the genetic material of the cell ". Baltimore discovered the enzyme reverse transcriptase, which circumscribes the ribonucleic acid ( RNA) to deoxyribonucleic acid ( DNA). RNA and DNA play an important role in the synthesis of proteins and transfer of genetic information. The reverse transcriptase is essential for the growth of so-called retroviruses.
In 1981 he built with his colleague Vincent Racaniello one the genome of poliovirus via a plasmid into a mammalian cell, so that there propagated the virus.
On the David Baltimore "Baltimore classification " of viruses goes back.
Baltimore, Alejandro Balazs and others belonged in 2012 to a team that a new vaccine strategy against AIDS developed using methods of gene therapy (Vector Immuno prophylaxis, IVP). The vaccine bypasses the production of antibodies by the immune system ( which is attacked by the HIV virus), the genes for the desired antibody can be directly incorporated into the body's cells. Baltimore tested the principle in which he included genes for the antibody b12, VRC01 against Aids in muscle cells of mice, which protected them effective against AIDS.
In 1971 he received the Eli Lilly and Company Research Award, the Gairdner Foundation International Award in 1974 one and the National Academy of Sciences Award in Molecular Biology and 1999, the National Medal of Science. In 2004 he was made an honorary Doctor of Rockefeller University.