John Sedivy is recognized for his efforts in mammalian cell genetics, having developed and pioneered methods for gene targeting of somatic cells. In 1995 his laboratory isolated the first viable gene knockout of the c-Myc oncogene, and in 1997 the first homozygous gene knockout in a normal human cell. Since 1998 his research has focused on understanding the biology of aging at the cellular level. These projects currently investigate the epigenetic regulation of cellular senescence, genome-wide surveillance of transposable elements, and the role of c-Myc in aging.

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Professor John Sedivy joined the Brown Faculty in 1996 and is a member of the Department of Molecular Biology, Cell Biology and Biochemistry. He obtained his PhD from Harvard in 1985, and subsequently trained with the Nobel Laureate Philip Sharp at the MIT Center for Cancer Research. He started his independent research career at Yale University in 1988.

John Sedivy's research on cell cycle regulation and signal transduction, focusing initially on the Myc oncogene and subsequently on replicative senescence (cellular aging), has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health since 1989. In 2003 he became interested in genomics, and his work on Myc-regulated gene networks led to an involvement in bioinformatics and systems biology. In 2004 his lab started work on single-cell assays of cellular senescence by developing a robust biomarker of telomere-initiated senescence. Using this assay they delineated the signaling pathways between dysfunctional telomeres and the cell cycle, and in 2006 published the first comprehensive in vivo quantification of cellular senescence in aging primates. In 2006 they also discovered that c-Myc contributes to the regulation of chromatin states though the Polycomb pathway, initiating their entry into epigenetics. This led to the development of single-cell assays showing age-associated in vivo expansion of heterochromatin, and current studies of genome-wide chromatin changes in cellular senescence as well as organismal aging.

In addition to writing the first comprehensive book on gene targeting in 1992, John Sedivy has published over 130 original articles. He has served on numerous study sections and advisory committees at the National Institutes of Health, the American Cancer Society, and the US Army Breast Cancer Initiative. He has consulted extensively on the genetic manipulation of mammalian cells to the biotech industry, including Biogen, Eli Lilly & Co., Abbott Laboratories, and Millenium Pharmaceuticals. He maintains an active role in the field of aging, as a founding member (and current chair) of the CMAD study section at the National Institutes of Health, co-Editor-in-Chief of the journal Aging Cell, and chair of the 2015 Gordon Research Conference on the Biology of Aging. He has fulfilled major administrative leadership roles at Brown University, including chairing the Department of Molecular Biology, Cell Biology and Biochemistry, and founding an academic center for Genomics and Proteomics.

Curricum Vitae

Download John Sedivy's Curriculum Vitae in PDF Format

Hermon C. Bumpus Professor of Biology and Professor of Medical Science
Molecular Biology, Cell Biology, & Biochemistry
Phone: +1 401 863 7631
E-mail: John_Sedivy@Brown.EDU

John Sedivy's Brown Research URL:

On The Web:
By knocking out gene p21, research team temporarily thwarts human cells' aging process
Findings about cell division yield new target for cancer drug
Research on biology of aging puts Brown on the map (GSJ of June 25, 2004)
Brown researchers discover important piece of genetic aging puzzle
Aging cells lose their grip on DNA rogues

Brown collaborators:

Collaborators at other institutions:
Peter Adams, University of Glasgow
Andrea Maier, Free University of Amsterdam

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