Newswise — BETHESDA, MD – The Genetics Society of America (GSA) and Executive Producer Rochelle Easton Esposito, PhD, are pleased to announce that Conversations in Genetics, an oral history of our intellectual heritage in genetics, is now available for free online viewing at

Conversations in Genetics offers in depth video interviews of prominent geneticists who made seminal contributions to the field, conducted by prominent research colleagues. These interviews serve to preserve the history of the field for future generations, enrich the education of scholars of genetics on how important concepts originated, and promote full integration and use of our historical heritage to advance current work. The videos were previously only available as DVDs.

"The Conversations in Genetics project provides a unique opportunity to learn about the development of critical ideas and insights in modern genetics by speaking directly with the scientific pioneers who originated them," said Esposito, a former GSA president who initiated the project in 1997 and has continued to serve as Executive Producer and Scientific Editor. (See "Conversation in Genetics," The Scientist, for additional background.)

The following interviews are currently available online:

Volume 1


Leland HartwellFrancois JacobEdward LewisArno MotulskyEvelyn Witkin

Leland Hartwell

by Rochelle Esposito

Cell Cycle Control in Yeast

Francois Jacob

by Lucille Shapiro

The Central Dogma
Gene Regulation

Edward Lewis

by Elliot Meyerowitz

Drosophila Development

Arno Motulsky

by Mary-Claire King

Human Disease

Evelyn Witkin

by Carol Gross

DNA Repair

 Volume 2


Seymour BenzerJames CrowIra HerskowitzDaniel LindsleyJanet Rowley

Seymour Benzer

by David Anderson

Gene Structure
Behavioral Genetics

James Crow

by Daniel Hartl

Mutation, Selection,
Genetic Drift

Ira Herskowitz

by Jasper Rine

Lambda and
Yeast Gene Regulation

Daniel Lindsley

by Scott Hawley

Chromosome Mechanics

Janet Rowley

by Alfred Knudson

Cancer Genetics

 Volume 3


Elizabeth BlackburnSydney BrennerVictor McKusiskRay OwenCharles Yanofsky

Elizabeth Blackburn

by Joseph Gall

Telomeres, Cancer, Aging

Sydney Brenner

by Barbara Meyer

Genetic Code
Worm Development

Victor McKusick

by Judith Hall

Human Genetics

Ray Owen

by James Crow

Stem Cells, Immunogenetics

Charles Yanofsky

by David Botstein

Colinearity, Suppression

 Volume 4


Paul BergWalter GehringDale KaiserPiotr Slonimski 

Paul Berg

by Charles Yanofsky

RNA/Protein Synthesis
Recombinant DNA

Walter Gehring

by Debra Wolgemuth

Homeobox and Eye Development

Dale Kaiser

by Ronald Davis

Lambda and
Myxococcus Development

Piotr Slonimski

by Giuseppi Attardi

Mitochondrial Genetics


Several additional conversations are currently in production:

  • Luca Cavalli-Sforza, interviewed by Marc Feldman
  • Norman Horowitz, interviewed by Ray Owen
  • Mary-Claire King, interviewed by Evan Eichler
  • Elliot Meyerowitz, interviewed by Daphne Preuss

The GSA provided financial support for the project for its first ten years, with additional contributions from the American Society of Human Genetics. The project is presently supported independently by private donations.

Online streaming of the videos has been provided by Dean Flanders of the Friedrich Miescher Institute and Swiss National Grid Association (SwiNG), Basel, Switzerland.

Tax-deductible donations may be made to GSA or SwiNG to support continuation of the project; see for additional information.


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About the Genetics Society of America (GSA)

Founded in 1931, the Genetics Society of America (GSA) is the professional scientific society for genetics researchers and educators. The Society’s more than 5,000 members worldwide work to deepen our understanding of the living world by advancing the field of genetics, from the molecular to the population level. GSA promotes research and fosters communication through a number of GSA-sponsored conferences including regular meetings that focus on particular model organisms. GSA publishes two peer-reviewed, peer-edited scholarly journals: GENETICS, which has published high quality original research across the breadth of the field since 1916, and G3: Genes|Genomes|Genetics, an open-access journal launched in 2011 to disseminate high quality foundational research in genetics and genomics. The Society also has a deep commitment to education and fostering the next generation of scholars in the field. For more information about GSA, please visit


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