Richard Sprott began his undergraduate studies at Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. He completed them at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, earning a B.A. with honors in Psychology. After receiving his Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology (Behavior Genetics) at U.N.C. he went on to a post-doctoral fellowship in Behavior Genetics at the Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine. Following two years of teaching at Oakland University, Dr. Sprott returned to The Jackson Laboratory where he conducted a research program on single gene influences on behavior and the interaction of aging variables with those genes.
After a decade in Maine, Dr. Sprott moved to the National Institute on Aging where he directed the Institute's programs on the Biology of Aging. A major focus of his career has been the development of animal models for aging research. He developed a nationwide research program of research on biomarkers of aging and the effects of dietary restriction on longevity. He is the author of a large number of books and articles. He is an internationally recognized expert on animal model development and plays an active role in model development in countries around the world. He is the President of the International Biogerontological Resource Institute (IBRI) in Friuli, Italy.
Dr. Sprott left the National Institute on Aging in 1998 to become the first Executive Director of the Ellison Medical Foundation, created to support basic biological and biomedical research on aging and recently expanded to provide similar support for basic research on infectious diseases of importance in the developed and developing worlds. The Ellison Medical Foundation is the largest private foundation source of funding for the biology of aging, providing about $20,000,000 per year in grant funds for aging research, and will provide up to $25,000,000 for infectious disease research.
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