Skip to main content

Mario Capecchi, 2003-02-27

 Item — Box: AV01, miniDV: CSHL1029
Oral History | Mario Capecchi
Oral History | Mario Capecchi

Scope and Contents

Mario Capecchi discusses the following in his interview: LIFE IN SCIENCE: Advice for Young Scientists, Becoming a Scientist, Current Research.

JAMES D. WATSON: Jim Watson, “Lucky Jim”, Jim Watson: Director of CSHL, Jim Watson, Nobel Prize, Jim Watson’s Harvard Laboratory, Jim Watson’s Harvard Laboratory: Atmosphere, Jim Watson’s Harvard Laboratory: Communication, Working with Jim Watson: Harvard University, Jim Watson and his Students, Jim Watson, Mentor: Fostering Independence, Jim Watson, Mentor: Honest Feedback, Jim Watson, mentor: Role Model, Jim Watson, Mentor: Teaching the Essence of Science, Jim Watson’s Harvard Laboratory: Independence, Jim Watson, Personality & Influence, Jim Watson, Personality & Influence: Today, Jim Watson, Mentor: Publishing Papers, Jim Watson, Writer, Science & Writing.

CSHL: CSHL, John Cairns: Director of CSHL, CSHL: Meetings & Courses, CSHL: Watson School of Biological Sciences, CSHL Symposia, CSHL Symposia: Past & Present, The Future of CSHL.


  • Creation: 2003-02-27


Conditions Governing Access

Portions of this collection have been digitized and are available online: Select tapes have been digitized thanks to support from CLIR Recordings at Risk Grant awarded in 2021, these tapes are available for research online via our Oral History Website and in person at CSHL Archives. Please contact CSHL Archives with any questions regarding availability.

Biographical / Historical

Mario R. Capecchi, Ph.D., is a scientist and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator at the Eccles Institute of Human Genetics at the University of Utah Health Sciences Center and a founding member of the Brain Institute at the University of Utah. He also serves as the Distinguished Professor and Co-Chairman of Human Genetics and Biology at the University of Utah, where he joined the faculty in 1973.

In 2007 Mario Capecchi was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine with Oliver Smithies and Martin Evans for their research on gene targeting techniques, specifically working with mice embryo-derived stem cells. In the 1980s Capecchi pioneered a technology known as "knockout mice" which revolutionized genetic and biomedical research. This technology allows scientists to replace or disrupt specific genes in mice to understand how a similar gene disruption in humans may cause or contribute to diseases.

Capecchi, abandoned and homeless as a 4-year old child in Italy during World War II, was reunited with his mother and immigrated to the United States in 1946. After receiving a B.S. in physics and chemistry from Antioch College in 1961, he joined Jim Watson's Biological laboratory at Harvard University where he received a doctorate in biophysics in 1967. Capecchi remained at Harvard, first as a junior fellow until 1969, followed by four years as Assistant Professor in the Department of Biochemistry at Harvard School of Medicine, until he left for the University of Utah in 1973.

Capecchi is a member of the National Academy of Sciences (1991) and the European Academy of Sciences (2002). His other numerous honors include the Bristol-Myers Squibb Award for Distinguished Achievement in Neuroscience Research (1992), Gairdner Foundation International Award for Achievements in Medical Science (1993), General Motors Corporation's Alfred P. Sloan Jr. Prize for Outstanding Basic Science Contributions to Cancer Research (1994), Kyoto Prize in Basic Sciences (1996), the Franklin Medal for Advancing Our Knowledge of the Physical Sciences (1997), the University of Utah's Rosenblatt Prize for Excellence (1998), the Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research (2001), the National Medal of Science (2001), the Wolf Prize in Medicine (2003), the Pezcoller Foundation-AACR (American Association for Cancer Research) International Award for Cancer Research (2003), and the March of Dimes Prize in Developmental Biology (2005).


1 Optical Disks (Talking Science with Mario Capecchi) : DVD

1 Cassettes (Camcorder footage) : MiniDV - CSHL1029

1 VHS : Cappechi_Mario_2003_01 [0:53:09]

Language of Materials

From the Collection: English


VHS tape digitized in 2021 by CLIR RAR Grant.

Repository Details

Part of the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Archives Repository

Library & Archives
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
One Bungtown Rd
Cold Spring Harbor NY 11724 USA