Beckman Research Institute Milestones


  • The Research Institute is dedicated.



  • The Division of Neurosciences is created.
  • The Division of Biology is created.



  • The Division of Immunology is created.
  • The Bone Marrow Transplantation Program is initiated, making City of Hope one of the first of six medical centers in the nation to perform this lifesaving procedure.
  • Ernest Beutler, M.D., is elected to the National Academy of Sciences in recognition of his research on the genetics of hematological diseases.
  • Arthur Riggs, Ph.D., and Keiichi Itakura, Ph.D., synthesize the human insulin gene resulting in the production of Humulin®, a pure source of human insulin available to people with diabetes.
  • Keiichi Itakura, Ph.D., and Arthur Riggs, Ph.D., pioneer the recombinant DNA techniques used to synthesize human growth hormone, enabling thousands of undersized youngsters to reach near-normal height.
  • The National Cancer Institute awards the first in a series of major grants to City of Hope’s Bone Marrow Transplantation Program.
  • Susumu Ohno, D.V.M., Ph.D., is elected to the National Academy of Sciences in recognition of his work on X chromosome inactivation and his theory of evolution by gene duplication.



  • Yoko Fujita-Yamaguchi, Ph.D., purifies the insulin receptor molecule.
  • The Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation provides a $10 million grant to establish the Beckman Research Institute of City of Hope.
  • Rachmiel Levine, M.D., is elected to the National Academy of Sciences in recognition of his pioneering work on discovering how insulin controls blood sugar levels.
  • The Beckman Research Institute is dedicated.
  • Arthur Riggs, Ph.D., and Shmuel Cabilly, Ph.D., demonstrate the feasibility and describe a method for making humanized monoclonal antibodies, technology later used in “smart” cancer drugs such as Herceptin, Rituxan and Avastin.
  • Eugene Roberts, Ph.D., is elected to the National Academy of Sciences in recognition of his work on the existence and function of GABA and other neurotransmitters on the brain and nervous system.



  • John Rossi, Ph.D., reports first use of RNA to block the progress of the virus that causes AIDS.
  • The Graduate School of Biological Sciences is chartered.
  • The Division of Molecular Medicine is created.
  • Gerd Pfeifer, Ph.D., definitively links smoking to lung cancer, identifying the genetic damage done by the active compounds in cigarettes.
  • The Division of Molecular Biology is created.
  • Barry Forman, M.D., Ph.D., identifies the first new steroid-like hormone in 30 years, androstanol, a hormone that reverses or halts gene activity.
  • The Division of Virology is created.
  • Arthur Riggs, Ph.D., is named Director of the Beckman Research Institute.


2000 to Present

  • The Center for Biomedicine & Genetics is established to ensure that City of Hope scientific discoveries are efficiently translated from the research lab to the clinical setting.
  • Launch of the Diabetes Metabolism Research Institute
  • Launch of the Hematologic Malignancies and Stem Cell Transplantation Institute
  • The Wanek Family Project for Type 1 Diabetes - A cure for Type 1 diabetes (T1D) in six years is the new goal of City of Hope’s Diabetes and Metabolism Research Institute. Through the generosity of the Wanek family and gifts from anonymous donors, the institution will be able to devote more than $50 million over the next six years to an innovative research effort that seeks to find a cure for T1D.
  • Alliance with Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGEN), a nonprofit genetics research and bioinformatics organization, that will give institute investigators access to best-in-class genomic and informatics expertise in precision medicine.
  • CAR T Cell Therapy for Brain Tumors - City of Hope researchers have found that using CAR T therapy can be effective in the treatment of glioblastoma.