Michael J. Waring
Affilation: University of Cambridge, UK
Journal Associated: Journal of Genetic Medicine and Gene Therapy
Professor Michael Waring is a retired academic at the University of Cambridge. He graduated with M.A. and Ph.D degrees in Biochemistry in 1964 and was awarded the Sc.D degree in 1975. After spending a year at the Carnegie Institution of Washington he returned to
Cambridge as demonstrator (assistant lecturer) in Biochemistry for 2 years, then migrated to the Department of Pharmacology as Lecturer, Reader, and subsequently Professor of Chemotherapy, from which he formally retired in 2004. During that long career he held numerous posts as visiting professor at many universities worldwide, receiving prizes,
honours, and other forms of recognition for his research work and teaching. He continues actively teaching medical students and biochemists at Jesus College, Cambridge, and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry. He has had wide experience on grant-awarding
committees, governing bodies, advisory panels and appointment committees; work which he still continues. Over the last 55 years, he has published more than 300 peer-reviewed articles as well as 20
books as editor or co-author. He no longer reviews manuscripts for publication but serves as external reviewer for a variety of Health and Medical Research Councils or Cancer Research charities.
Prof. Waring’s research has focused principally around the binding of antibiotics and drugs to DNA and the consequences thereof. His Ph.D work established the intercalation model for binding of ethidium to nucleic acids, and subsequently led to studies on the interaction
between diverse drugs and DNA, particularly circular DNA, which led to many fundamental discoveries relating to anti-cancer activity as well as molecular recognition. He has worked on biophysical aspects of drug binding, directed biosynthesis as a means of generating new antibiotics, and interactions with complex systems involving proteins as well as nucleic acids, not least nucleosome core particles. Early in his career he cooperated with Roy Britten in discovering the existence of repeated sequences in the DNA of higher organisms, a very early herald of the complexity that is now a fundamental feature of genomics.