This website provides a curated collection of resources about the people, places and technologies that have enabled biotechnology to transform our healthcare and the world we live in today

Timeline of key events

Timeline of key events in biotechnology

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Date Event People Places Sciences
1977Monoclonal antibodies developed for automatic fluorescence-activated cell sorter Milstein, Herzenberg, OiLaboratory of Molecular Biology, Stanford University Medical School, University of TorontoMonoclonal antibodies
1977Bone marrow transplants is clinically provenDonnallFred Hutchinson, Seattle, New YorkStem cells
1977Complete sequence of bacteriophage phi X174 DNA determinedSangerLaboratory of Molecular BiologySequencing DNA
1977First computer programme written to help with the compilation and analysis of DNA sequence dataMcCallumLaboratory of Molecular BiologySequencing DNA
Feb 1977Two different DNA sequencing methods published that allow for the rapid sequencing of long stretches of DNASanger, Maxam, GilbertHarvard University, Laboratory of Molecular BiologySequencing DNA
Feb 1977Partnership begun for first commercial distribution of cells for producing monoclonal antibodiesMilstein, Murray Monoclonal antibodies
Feb 1977Scientists find a way to generate T cells in thymic tissue in test tubes, paving the way study mechanisms underlying the regulation of T cell developmentRobinson, OwenUniversity of Newcastle upon TyneImmunology, Immunotherapy, Oncology
25 Mar 1977Discovery of Granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF). This plays an important role in the immune system and the process of inflammation. Burghess, Camakaris, MetcalfWalter and Eliza Hall InstituteImmunology
1977Monoclonals produced against histocompatibility antigensMilstein, Galfre, HowardLaboratory of Molecular Biology, Brabraham InstituteMonoclonal antibodies
01 Apr 1977Development of first anti-idiotype antibodies. These are shown to activate immune defense cells to attack tumour cells in guinea-pigsStevenson, ElliottTenovus Research LaboratoryImmunology, Immunotherapy, Oncology
Jun 1977First US patent application filed for monoclonal antibodiesCroce, Koprowski, MilsteinWistar InstituteMonoclonal antibodies
Jul 1977T cell growth factor, later named Interleukin-2 (IL-2), discovered in mice, providing a means to grow and expand normal lypmphocytes in test tubesRuscetti, Morgan, GalloNational Cancer InstituteImnmunology, Immunotherapy, Oncology
25 Jul 1977Louis F Fieser diedFieserHarvard University 
1977Monoclonal antibodies made to unknown cell surface antigensMilstein, Galfre, WilliamsLaboratory of Molecular Biology, Sir William Dunn School of PathologyMonoclonal antibodies
1978Hybritech foundedRoyston, Birndoff, GreeneSan DiegoMonoclonal antibodies
1978Human insulin produced in E-coli GenentechRecombinant DNA
1978First monoclonal antibodies generated to human T-cellsMilstein, McMichaelLaboratory of Molecular Biology, Oxford UniversityMonoclonal antibodies
1978First monoclonal antibody generated for blood typingMilsteinLaboratory of Molecular Biology, Oxford UniversityMonoclonal antibodies
1978Transplantable stem cells discovered in human cord bloodEvansCambridge UniversityStem cells
Feb 1978First commercialisation of monoclonal antibodies as laboratory reagentsMilstein, MurrayLaboratory of Molecular Biology, Sera-LabMonoclonal antibodies

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