Dame Amanda Fisher is a cell biologist who has contributed to multiple areas of biology, including determining the function of several genes in HIV and describing the importance of a gene's location within the cell nucleus.
Fisher is the Director of the Medical Research Council (MRC) London Institute of Medical Sciences at the Hammersmith Hospital campus of Imperial College London. She is also a Professor leading the Institute of Clinical Sciences, which is aiming to improve the links between science and medicine, so that a greater understanding of human disease can be translated into improved diagnoses and treatments.
Fisher received her PhD in 1984 from the University of Birmingham. During this time, she was awarded a Lady Tata Memorial Fellowship to study gene regulation in the laboratory of Robert Gallo at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the USA. As a postdoctoral scientist, Amanda produced the first biologically active molecular clones of HIV that enabled studies of the function of the genes of the virus. She later became interested in epigenetics and nuclear reprogramming, particularly in lymphocytes and embryonic stem (ES) cells.
Fisher moved back to the UK in 1997. Currently, her research explores how gene expression patterns are inherited as cells divide and how gene expression is changed during mammalian development.
Fisher was elected a member of the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) in 2001 and awarded the EMBO Gold Medal in 2002, in recognition of her work on nuclear organisation and gene expression, as well as her research in the molecular characterisation of the HIV/AIDS. Fisher was elected a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences (FMedSci) in 2003 and a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2014.
In the 2017 New Year Honours, Fisher was awarded a DBE for services to medical research and the public understanding of science.