Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory's 2003 Cultural Series Honors DNA Discovery

When Dr. James D. Watson was the director of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory he believed in providing ample cultural opportunities for scientists to inspire their creativity. In that tradition, CSHL is presenting its 2003 Cultural Series as a celebration of the 50th anniversary of Dr. Watson and Francis Crick’s Nobel Prize-winning discovery of the structure of DNA. “The Double Helix 50th Anniversary Cultural Series” will honor Dr. Watson, current president of CSHL, and his own creativity by bringing a wide variety of art, music, literature and lectures to Cold Spring Harbor.

Many of the lectures this year will focus on the practical uses of the double helix and how it has benefited humanity for the past 50 years. Featured lecturers include Oliver Sacks, author of Awakenings, The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and Uncle Tungsten; Barry Scheck who formed "The Innocence Project" at Cardozo Law School and has assisted in more than 100 cases where convictions were reversed or overturned based on DNA evidence; Eric Lander, one of the principal leaders of the Human Genome Project; and Robert Shaler, director of forensic biology for the Medical Examiner's office of New York City, who has spent the last two years identifying more than 650 World Trade Center victims.

The comprehensive line-up of concerts for the year includes an eclectic mix of musical styles from classical cello to piano duets to singers and post-modern chamber music performed by renowned musicians who have played around the world. The series also includes an art exhibit by Matthew Shreiber, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory’s 2002-2003 Artist-in-Residence, and a book signing by Dr. Watson of his most recent book, DNA: The Secret of Life.

To register for lectures, order concert subscriptions, or for additional information about “The Double Helix 50th Anniversary Cultural Series,” please visit series is part of a yearlong “DNA at 50” celebration. Exhibits, meetings and other special events are planned throughout 2003 in New York and around the world. For more information, visit

Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory is a private, non-profit basic research institution. Under the leadership of Dr. Bruce Stillman, a member of the National Academy of Sciences and a Fellow of the Royal Society (London), some 300 scientists at the Laboratory conduct groundbreaking research in cancer, neurobiology, plant genetics, and bioinformatics. For additional information, call (516) 367-8455, or visit the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory website at