Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser

Ottoline Leyser is Professor of Plant Development and Director of the Sainsbury Laboratory at the University of Cambridge.

Ottoline received her BA and PhD in genetics from the University of Cambridge. After postdoctoral research at Indiana University, USA and Cambridge, she took up a lectureship at the University of York, where she worked from 1994-2010. 

Among her honours are the Society of Experimental Biology’s President’s Medal (2000), the Royal Society Rosalind Franklin Award (2007), the International Plant Growth Substance Association’s Silver Medal (2010), the UK Genetics Society Medal (2016) and the EMBO Women in Science Award (2017). She was appointed a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in the 2017 New Year Honours list for services to plant science, science in society and equality and diversity in science. 

She is a Fellow of the Royal Society, a Foreign Associate of the US National Academy of Sciences and a Member of the European Molecular Biology Organisation and the Leopoldina. She is Chair of the British Society for Developmental Biology, and of the Royal Society’s Science Policy Advisory Group. She is Co-Editor in Chief of the science journal Current Opinions in Plant Biology and a Fellow of Clare College, Cambridge.