Known as a pioneer in the field of stem cell editing, Jan Van Deursen is an internationally recognized American scientist. He has been working on developing new treatments for age-related diseases, and his groundbreaking discoveries are leading the way. In the Netherlands, Van Deursen studied stem cell editing, then moved to the United States in 1994, where he became a scientist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. In his research, Van Deursen has discovered that cells accumulate with age, fail to die and accumulate senescent cells.
During his childhood, Jan Van Deursen assisted his father in his work as a carpenter. His father specialized in building custom staircases and windows. Unfortunately, his childhood wasn’t always idyllic. His mother developed pulmonary fibrosis at age ten and died during his last year of high school. This incident sparked his passion for research and led to the creation of the Mayo Clinic’s Knockout Core Facility.
While he is the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology chair at Mayo Clinic, Jan Van Deursen has mentored dozens of young scientists. Mentors provide young researchers with an initial boost, and they build upon each other’s research. The same goes for Dr Childs. Ultimately, Jan Van Deursen’s research has shaped many people’s lives. Without his support, many young researchers today would not be where they are.