Oral Histories

Interview of Brenda L. Bass

Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences: Brenda L. Bass
Pew Scholars Program in the Biomedical Sciences
Science, Medicine, and Technology
Maestrejuan, Andrea R.
Bass, Brenda L.
Supporting Documents:
Records relating to the interview are located in the office of the UCLA Library's Center for Oral History Research.
Regents of the University of California, UCLA Library.
Series Statement:
Interviews in this series, sponsored by the Pew Charitable Trusts, document the research of "outstanding scientists from quality institutions" chosen by the Pew Scholars Program to receive four-year stipends.
Growing up in Florida; undergraduate studies in chemistry at Colorado College; decides on a career in biochemistry while working in a lab at Rush Medical College of Rush University; graduate studies at University of Colorado; joins Thomas P. Cech's lab; the Cech lab's discovery that RNA itself can catalyze a splicing reaction; postdoctoral research with Harold Weintraub at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center; discovers covalent modification of double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) substrate during dsRNA unwinding; Bass's field of study expands to include dsRNA-binding proteins in general; the decision to establish her lab at the University of Utah; her strategy of remaining flexible regarding the direction of her research; how sexism and gender issues have affected her career; the risks and benefits of collaboration; responsibilities outside the lab; the funding of scientific research; training students; Bass's enjoyment of creative basic research.