Joram Piatigorsky

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Joram Piatigorsky
Born (1940-02-24) February 24, 1940 (age 79)
Alma materCalifornia Institute of Technology
Harvard University
OccupationMolecular biologist
Lona Shepley (m. 1969)
Parent(s)Gregor Piatigorsky and Jacqueline de Rothschild

Joram Piatigorsky (born February 24, 1940) is an American molecular biologist and eye researcher at the National Institutes of Health.[1][2] He was a NIH Distinguished Scientist and the founding Chief of the Laboratory of Molecular and Developmental Biology at the National Eye Institute (1981–2009). [3]

He is the son of cellist Gregor Piatigorsky and Jacqueline de Rothschild.[4]


Piatigorsky has published more than 300 scientific articles, reviews and book chapters on vision research. He has written a book on evolution, in which he summarized and extended his "gene sharing" concept,[5] and co-edited a book on an international symposium he organized: Molecular Biology of the Eye: Genes, Vision and Ocular Disease.[6]

His debut novel, Jellyfish Have Eyes, forewarns of the danger of reducing funding for basic research,[7] and has garnered positive reviews in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America.[8][9][10]

His memoir, The Speed of Dark, was published by Adelaide Books in 2018. [11] [12]


  1. ^ "Joram Piatigorsky | Helen Keller Foundation". Retrieved 2015-07-02.
  2. ^ "Joram Piatigorsky | Molecular Vision |". ZoomInfo. Retrieved 2015-07-04.
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Piatgorsky House is Gone, But Pieces of History Were Saved". Los Angeles Times. December 1, 2014.
  5. ^ Joram PIATIGORSKY; Joram Piatigorsky (30 June 2009). Gene Sharing and Evolution: The Diversity of Protein Functions. Harvard University Press. ISBN 978-0-674-04212-4.
  6. ^ Ringens, P.J.; Cotran, P.R. (1989). "Molecular biology of the eye, vol. 88: Genes, vision, and ocular disease" (PDF). American Journal of Human Genetics. 45 (2): 340. ISSN 0002-9297. PMC 1683347.
  7. ^ Joram Piatigorsky (1 June 2014). Jellyfish Have Eyes. International Psychoanalytic Books. ISBN 978-0-9895622-6-3.
  8. ^ Shurkin, Joel (2015). "Science and Culture: Using fiction to make the case for basic research". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 112 (14): 4185–4186. doi:10.1073/pnas.1502378112. ISSN 0027-8424. PMC 4394243. PMID 25852137.
  9. ^ "NEI Scientist Emeritus's Debut Novel Probes Jellyfish Eyes - The NIH Record - May 8, 2015". Retrieved 2015-06-25.
  10. ^ "Narrative NIH scientist enters literary world -- Gazette.Net". Archived from the original on 2015-07-14. Retrieved 2015-06-25.
  11. ^
  12. ^

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