Anthony A. Hyman

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Anthony Hyman
Anthony Arie Hyman
BornAnthony Arie Hyman
(1962-05-27) 27 May 1962 (age 56)[1]
Haifa, Israel[1]
Alma mater
Scientific career
FieldsMolecular Cell Biology
ThesisEstablishment of division axes in the early embryonic divisions of Caenorhabditis Elegans (1987)

Anthony Arie Hyman (born 27 May 1962) FRS is a British scientist and professor at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics.[3][4][5]


Hyman was educated at University College London and King's College, Cambridge[1] where he was awarded a PhD in 1987.


Hyman has focused his career on examining microtubules and how these structures of the cytoskeleton control: cell division, mitotic spindle position, and cell polarity. Hyman's research has identified how microtubules are made into cellular structures and how they are broken down.

While at King's College, Cambridge, Hyman worked under the supervision of John White and was a key researcher in Sydney Brenner's C. elegans group. Using microscopy and microsurgery, he examined the placement of cell axes during early cell division of C.elegans embryos. Hyman presented new findings about mechanisms of rotation by cutting microtubules with a laser beam. Hyman demonstrated that pulling forces acting from the posterior cortex on microtubules drives spindle rotation.[6]

At the University of California, San Francisco, Hyman investigated the interaction between chromosomes and microtubules that create the mitotic forces that separate chromosomes in the lab of Tim Mitchison. He also created a number of tools that are used today:

  • atypical hydrolysable GTP analog GMPCPP[7]
  • various fluorescent tubulin derivatives[8][9]
  • assays for motors and microtubule polarity[10]

While at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) Hyman along with Rebecca Heald and Eric Karsenti combined their work to create an impact on the current understanding of how the meiotic spindle self assembles.[11] Hyman created his first independent group at EMBL that discovered that the important factors in Xenopus egg extracts were the stabilizing protein, XMAP215 and the destabilizing protein, XKCM1.[12]

In 1999, Hyman became one of the four founding directors of Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics[13] and was the Managing Director for the institute from 2010-2013. Hyman and his lab members are currently focusing on:

  • Cytoplasmic organization and how cells form non-membrane bound compartments
  • Size and scaling of the spindle, centrosomes, and other organelles
  • Spatial control of the microtubule cytoskeleton
  • Positioning of the spindle

Hyman has worked on creating parts lists for cell division among human cells as part of the EU funded projects Mitocheck[14] and MitoSys.[15]

Awards and honours[edit]

In 2011, Hyman was awarded the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize, Germany's most prestigious research award, for his work on microtubules and cell division.[16] Hyman was elected a Member in 2000 of the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) in 2000 and was awarded its Gold Medal in 2003.[2] He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) in 2007.[17]


  1. ^ a b c HYMAN, Prof. Anthony Arie. Who's Who. 2015 (online Oxford University Press ed.). A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc. closed access publication – behind paywall (subscription required)
  2. ^ a b Hyman, A. A. (2005). "Boveri revisited". The EMBO Journal. 24 (6): 1104–1110. doi:10.1038/sj.emboj.7600583. PMC 556395. PMID 15775989.
  3. ^ Hyman, A (2007). "Anthony Hyman: From unlikely scientist to Royal Society Fellow. Interview by Ruth Williams". The Journal of Cell Biology. 179 (7): 1330–1. doi:10.1083/jcb.1797pi. PMC 2373514. PMID 18166646.
  4. ^ Hyman, A. A. (2011). "Whither systems biology". Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 366 (1584): 3635–3637. doi:10.1098/rstb.2011.0074. PMC 3203457. PMID 22084389.
  5. ^ Gönczy, P; Echeverri, C; Oegema, K; Coulson, A; Jones, S. J.; Copley, R. R.; Duperon, J; Oegema, J; Brehm, M; Cassin, E; Hannak, E; Kirkham, M; Pichler, S; Flohrs, K; Goessen, A; Leidel, S; Alleaume, A. M.; Martin, C; Ozlü, N; Bork, P; Hyman, A. A. (2000). "Functional genomic analysis of cell division in C. Elegans using RNAi of genes on chromosome III". Nature. 408 (6810): 331–6. doi:10.1038/35042526. PMID 11099034.
  6. ^ Hyman, A. A.; White, J. G. (1987). "Determination of cell division axes in the early embryogenesis of Caenorhabditis elegans". The Journal of Cell Biology. 105 (5): 2123–2135. doi:10.1083/jcb.105.5.2123. PMC 2114830. PMID 3680373.
  7. ^ Hyman, A. A.; Salser, S; Drechsel, D. N.; Unwin, N; Mitchison, T. J. (1992). "Role of GTP hydrolysis in microtubule dynamics: Information from a slowly hydrolyzable analogue, GMPCPP". Molecular Biology of the Cell. 3 (10): 1155–67. doi:10.1091/mbc.3.10.1155. PMC 275679. PMID 1421572.
  8. ^ Hyman, A; Drechsel, D; Kellogg, D; Salser, S; Sawin, K; Steffen, P; Wordeman, L; Mitchison, T (1991). Preparation of modified tubulins. Methods in Enzymology. 196. pp. 478–85. doi:10.1016/0076-6879(91)96041-o. ISBN 9780121820978. PMID 2034137..
  9. ^ Hyman, A. A. (1991). "Preparation of marked microtubules for the assay of the polarity of microtubule-based motors by fluorescence". Journal of Cell Science. Supplement. 14: 125–7. PMID 1832165.
  10. ^ Hyman, A. A.; Mitchison, T. J. (1991). "Two different microtubule-based motor activities with opposite polarities in kinetochores". Nature. 351 (6323): 206–11. doi:10.1038/351206a0. PMID 2041567.
  11. ^ Heald, R; Tournebize, R; Blank, T; Sandaltzopoulos, R; Becker, P; Hyman, A; Karsenti, E (1996). "Self-organization of microtubules into bipolar spindles around artificial chromosomes in Xenopus egg extracts". Nature. 382 (6590): 420–5. doi:10.1038/382420a0. PMID 8684481.
  12. ^ Tournebize, R; Popov, A; Kinoshita, K; Ashford, A. J.; Rybina, S; Pozniakovsky, A; Mayer, T. U.; Walczak, C. E.; Karsenti, E; Hyman, A. A. (2000). "Control of microtubule dynamics by the antagonistic activities of XMAP215 and XKCM1 in Xenopus egg extracts" (PDF). Nature Cell Biology. 2 (1): 13–9. doi:10.1038/71330. PMID 10620801.
  13. ^ "Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics". Retrieved 2010-12-11.
  14. ^ "MitoCheck Consortium". Retrieved 2014-04-24.
  15. ^ "MitoSys Consortium". Retrieved 2014-04-25.
  16. ^ "DFG Leibniz Prize Winner: Prof. Dr. Anthony A. Hyman". Retrieved 2014-04-25.
  17. ^ Hyman, T. (2011). "Tony Hyman". Current Biology. 21 (7): R240–R242. doi:10.1016/j.cub.2011.02.010.

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