Charles Cantor

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Charles Cantor
Born26 August 1942
Known forPulse field gel electrophoresis
Scientific career
FieldsMolecular genetics

Charles Cantor (born 1942) is an American molecular geneticist who, in conjunction with David Schwartz, developed pulse field gel electrophoresis for very large DNA molecules. Cantor's three-volume book, Biophysical Chemistry co-authored with Paul Schimmel, was an influential textbook in the 1980s and 1990s.

Charles Cantor is Director of the Center for Advanced Biotechnology at Boston University.[1] He is currently on a two-year sabbatical acting as Chief Scientific Officer at Sequenom, Inc.[2] However, his research laboratory at Boston University continues to be active, and he works there frequently. He is also a co-founder and Director of Retrotope, a US-based company using heavier isotopes of carbon (C13) and hydrogen (deuterium) to stabilize essential compounds like amino acids, nucleic acids and lipids to target age-related diseases.[3][4]

Cantor held positions at Columbia University and the University of California, Berkeley.

Cantor’s laboratory at Boston University has developed methods for separating large DNA molecules, for studying structural relationships in complex proteins and nucleic acids, and for sensitive detection of proteins and nucleic acids in a variety of settings.

Professor Cantor has been director of the Department of Energy Human Genome Project and Chairman of the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Boston University.

Cantor is a consultant to more than 16 biotech firms, has published more than 400 peer reviewed articles, been granted 54 US patents, and co-authored a three-volume textbook on Biophysical Chemistry.


Cantor is an author of:

  • Biophysical Chemistry with Paul Schimmel (1980)
    • The Conformation of Biological Macromolecules (vol 1)
    • Techniques for the Study of Biological Structure and Function (vol 2)
    • The Behavior of Biological Macromolecules (vol 3)
  • Genomics: The Science and Technology Behind the Human Genome Project with Cassandra L. Smith (1999)


  1. ^ "Charles Cantor".
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-04-28. Retrieved 2017-08-25.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ "Heavy hydrogen keeps yeast looking good".
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-07-15. Retrieved 2011-02-01.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)

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