Beth Shapiro

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Beth Shapiro
BETH SHAPIRO 5 (cropped).JPG
Born 1976
Allentown, Pennsylvania, US
Nationality United States
Fields Evolutionary biology
Institutions UC Santa Cruz, Oxford University, Pennsylvania State University
Alma mater

University of Georgia

Oxford University
Known for examination and analysis of ancient DNA
Notable awards MacArthur Fellowship (2009)

Beth Alison Shapiro (born 1976[1]) is an American evolutionary molecular biologist. She is an Associate Professor in the Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Shapiro's work has centered on the analysis of ancient DNA. She was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship in 2009.[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Shapiro was born in Allentown, Pennsylvania[2] and grew up in Rome, Georgia, where she served as the local news anchor while still in high school.[3] She graduated from the University of Georgia in 1999 with both a B.A. and an M.A. in ecology.[1] The same year she was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship.[3] In 2003 Shapiro received a D.Phil. in biology from Oxford University.[1]


Shapiro became a Wellcome Trust Research Fellow at Oxford in 2004. The same year she was appointed director of the Henry Wellcome Biomolecules Centre at Oxford. A position she held until 2007. In 2006 she was awarded a University Research Fellowship by the Royal Society. While at the Biomolecules Centre Shapiro carried out mitochondrial DNA analysis of the dodo.[4]

Shapiro has written on ecology for a number of journals including Science, Molecular Biology and Evolution and PLoS Biology. In 2007, she was named by Smithsonian Magazine as one of 37 young American innovators under the age of 36.[5]

Selected publications[edit]



Honors and awards[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e "2009 MacArthur Fellows: Beth Shapiro". MacArthur Foundation. Retrieved 19 March 2011. 
  2. ^ Beattie-Moss, Melissa. "Evolution of a Scientist: An Interview with Beth Shapiro". Research Penn State. Retrieved 19 March 2011. 
  3. ^ a b Williams, Phil; Hannon, Sharron. "The Rhodes to Oxford: Ecology student, Foundation Fellow Beth Shapiro becomes UGA’s third Rhodes Scholar in four years". University of Georgia. Retrieved 19 March 2011. 
  4. ^ Curry, Andrew. "How to Make a Dodo: Biologist Beth Shapiro has figured out a recipe for success in the field of ancient DNA research". Smithsonian Magazine. Retrieved 19 March 2011. 
  5. ^ 37 under 36: America's Young Innovators in the Arts and Sciences
  6. ^ "Beth Shapiro selected as National Geographic Emerging Explorer". Penn State Live. Retrieved 19 March 2011. 
  7. ^ "Beth A. Shapiro (BS ’99, MS ’99) receives Young Alumnus Award". Odom School of Ecology, The University of Georgia. Retrieved 19 March 2011. 

External links[edit]