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Fotis Constantine Kafatos (Φώτης Καφάτος; born 16 April 1940 in Heraklion, Crete, Greece) is a Greek molecular entomologist. Between 2005-2010 he was the founding president of the European Research Council and member of its Scientific Council. He remains Honorary President of the ERC.

At the beginning of his career, he contributed to the development of the cDNA cloning technology and worked on the mechanisms of cellular differentiation leading to the formation of the eggs in insects. He has particular interest in malaria research and used his knowledge of the genetics and molecular biology of insects to understand how the insect vector copes with the Plasmodium parasite. He also participated in the sequencing of the genome of the mosquito Anopheles gambiae completed in 2002.

Professional career

Kafatos was sponsored by Anne Gruner Schlumberger to study in the US.[1] He received his Bachelor's degree at Cornell University, and his Ph.D. from Harvard University (1965). He was Assistant Professor and later Professor and Chairman of the department of Cellular and Developmental Biology of Harvard University, Professor of Biology at the University of Athens and at the University of Crete, director of the Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (IMBB) of the Foundation for Research & Technology – Hellas in Heraklion and third Director-General of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory from 1993 to 2005.[2][3] Since 2005, he has been a professor at Imperial College in London. Since 2008, he is the President of the European Research Council.[4]

Fotis Kafatos is an influential Greek biologist, having had a pivotal role in triggering the interest of the Greek government for Science, with the establishment of the Faculty of Biology in the University of Athens, the Faculty of Biology in the University of Crete and the IMBB in Heraklion .

Honors, awards and society memberships

He is a member of the Royal Society of London, the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, the Académie des Sciences, the National Academy of Sciences (since 1982), the European Molecular biology Organization (EMBO).

In recognition to his contribution to the development of Biomedical research in Europe, he was awarded a 25th anniversary special prize by the Louis-Jeantet Foundation in 2008.[5] Most recently he was awarded the Robert Koch Gold Medal 2010 and the Leibniz Medal 2011, as well as the BioMalPar/EviMalaR Lifetime Achievement Award in 2011.

Selected publications

Efstratiadis A, Kafatos FC, Maxam AM, Maniatis T. (1976). "Enzymatic in vitro synthesis of globin genes". Cell 7 (2): 279–288. doi:10.1016/0092-8674(76)90027-1. PMID 60178.
Jones CW, Rosenthal N, Rodakis GC, Kafatos FC. (1979). "Evolution of two major chorion multigene families as inferred from cloned cDNA and protein sequences". Cell 18 (4): 1317–1332. doi:10.1016/0092-8674(79)90242-3. PMID 519771.
Zheng L, Saunders RD, Fortini D, della Torre A, Coluzzi M, Glover DM, Kafatos FC (1991). "Low resolution genome map of the malaria mosquito, Anopheles gambiae". Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 88 (24): 11187–11191. Bibcode 1991PNAS...8811187Z. doi:10.1073/pnas.88.24.11187. PMC 53099. PMID 1763031.
Dimopoulos G, Müller HM, Kafatos FC (1999). "How does Anopheles gambiae kill malaria parasites". Parassitologia 41 (1-3): 169–175. PMID 10697851.
Holt RA, Subramanian GM, Halpern A, Sutton GG, Charlab R, Nusskern DR, Wincker P, Clark AG, Ribeiro JM, Wides R, Salzberg SL, Loftus B, Yandell M, Majoros WH, Rusch DB, Lai Z, Kraft CL, Abril JF, Anthouard V, Arensburger P, Atkinson PW, Baden H, de Berardinis V, Baldwin D, Benes V, Biedler J, Blass C, Bolanos R, Boscus D, Barnstead M, Cai S, Center A, Chaturverdi K, Christophides GK, Chrystal MA, Clamp M, Cravchik A, Curwen V, Dana A, Delcher A, Dew I, Evans CA, Flanigan M, Grundschober-Freimoser A, Friedli L, Gu Z, Guan P, Guigo R, Hillenmeyer ME, Hladun SL, Hogan JR, Hong YS, Hoover J, Jaillon O, Ke Z, Kodira C, Kokoza E, Koutsos A, Letunic I, Levitsky A, Liang Y, Lin JJ, Lobo NF, Lopez JR, Malek JA, McIntosh TC, Meister S, Miller J, Mobarry C, Mongin E, Murphy SD, O'Brochta DA, Pfannkoch C, Qi R, Regier MA, Remington K, Shao H, Sharakhova MV, Sitter CD, Shetty J, Smith TJ, Strong R, Sun J, Thomasova D, Ton LQ, Topalis P, Tu Z, Unger MF, Walenz B, Wang A, Wang J, Wang M, Wang X, Woodford KJ, Wortman JR, Wu M, Yao A, Zdobnov EM, Zhang H, Zhao Q, Zhao S, Zhu SC, Zhimulev I, Coluzzi M, della Torre A, Roth CW, Louis C, Kalush F, Mural RJ, Myers EW, Adams MD, Smith HO, Broder S, Gardner MJ, Fraser CM, Birney E, Bork P, Brey PT, Venter JC, Weissenbach J, Kafatos FC, Collins FH, Hoffman SL (2002). "The genome sequence of the malaria mosquito Anopheles gambiae". Science 298 (5591): 129–149. Bibcode 2002Sci...298..129H. doi:10.1126/science.1076181. PMID 12364791.
Antonoyiannakis M, Hemmelskamp J, Kafatos FC. (2009). "The European Research Council takes flight". Cell 136 (5): 805–809. doi:10.1016/j.cell.2009.02.031. PMID 19269357.


^ "Fotis Kafatos: the model mentor". Rtdinfo 50 (August 2006).
^ Alison Abbott (1993). "Kafatos to be EMBL director; promises greater opportunity". Nature 362 (6417): 198. Bibcode 1993Natur.362Q.198A. doi:10.1038/362198a0. PMID 8459842.
^ Brief history of EMBL
^ James Butcher (2008). "Fotis Kafatos: President of the European Research Council". The Lancet 371 (9610): 379-379. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(08)60189-0. ISSN 0140-6736.
^ The 2008 Louis-Jeantet Prize-Winners

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