Roger Y. Tsien, USA

Roger Y. Tsien has been awarded the Dr H.P. Heineken Prize for Biochemistry and Biophysics 2002 for his extraordinary and unique contribution to the development of a series of methods and techniques for measuring and visualising processes within and between cells.

Roger TsienFurther reading

The Green Fluorescent Protein. Annual Review of Biochemistry 67 (1998) 507-544.
Griffin, B.A., Adams S.R. and Tsien R.Y., Specific Covalent labeling of Recombinant Protein Molecules Inside Live Cells. Science 281 (1998), 269.
Baird G.S., Zacharias D.A. and Tsien R.Y., Biochemistry, mutagenesis, and oligomerization of dsRed, a red fluorescent protein from coral. Proc.Natl.Acad.Sci. 97 (2000) 11984-11989.
Zacharias D.A., Baird G.S. and Tsien R.Y., Recent advances in technology for measuring and manipulating cell signals. Current Opinion in Neurobiology 10 (2000) 416-421.
Honda A., Adams S.R., Sawyer C.L., Lev-Ram V., Dostmann W.R.G. and Tsien R.Y., Spatiotemporal dynamics of guanosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate revealed by a genetically encoded, fluorescent indicator. Proc.Natl.Acad.Sci.USA 98 (2001) 2437.


Roger Y. Tsien was born in New York in 1952. He studied chemistry and physics at Harvard College, graduating summa cum laude in 1972, following which he joined the Physiological Laboratory at the University of Cambridge in the UK with the aid of a Marshall scholarship. After obtaining his Ph.D. there in 1977, Tsien remained as a researcher in Cambridge until 1981. He then returned to America to take up a post at Berkeley, where he ultimately became a professor in the Physiology & Anatomy faculty. Since 1989 he has been attached to the University of California in San Diego, as Professor of Pharmacology and Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry, and an investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Tsien has been receiving prizes for his work since as far back as 1968, including the W. Alden Spencer Award in Neurobiology from Columbia University (1991) and the Pearse Prize from the Royal Microscopical Society (2000). Since 1998 he has been a member of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States. Tsien died 24 August 2016.