Margit Nass Edelson, Ph.D.

Margit Nass Edelson, Ph.D.

Title: Professor Emerita of Radiation Oncology
Company: University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
Location: Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania, United States

Margit Nass Edelson, Ph.D., Professor Emerita of Radiation Oncology at University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Educators for dedication, achievements, and leadership in biological education and research.

Dr. Edelson has been notably credited among mitochondrial researchers as the primary investigator who discovered DNA in mitochondria, the bodies that generate most of the supply of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which are used as a source of chemical energy in the cell and are known as “the powerhouse of the cell.” She conducted this research on two awarded fellowships (National Science Foundation and American Cancer Society) at the University of Stockholm, where she discovered previously unknown fibers in mitochondria, which she proved to be DNA, forming unique circular molecules in animal cells.

After initially obtaining a Doctor of Philosophy from Columbia University in 1961, Dr. Edelson subsequently excelled as a faculty member of the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania from 1964 to 1999. She also had a secondary faculty appointment at the School of Veterinary Medicine a t the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Edelson has been designated as a Professor Emerita of Radiation Oncology since 1999.

Dr. Edelson was drawn to her profession upon the pursuit of her undergraduate education in the 1950s, through which she earned her bachelor’s degree, magna cum laude, in only two years. Though she initially intended to graduate with a degree in the arts, she was eventually convinced to shift her attention to education. Dr. Edelson’s interest in science and the example exhibited by her own teacher cemented her decision to become an educator. She considers her career highlight to have been her study on the advances, problems and goals of mitochondrial DNA.

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