Honorary Doctor of the University of Oulu, collagen and stem cell researcher Darwin Prockop, has passed away

Professor Darwin Prockop, who was awarded the honorary doctorate title by the Faculty of Medicine in 1983, has passed away. Prockop, an American scientist, was one of the world's leading collagen researchers, later expanding his expertise into stem cell and gene therapy.

Prockop passed away on January 22, 2024, in Philadelphia at the age of 94. He was a respected teacher, mentor, and collaborator who trained several Finnish researchers.

He had a particularly close relationship with emeritus Academy Professor Kari Kivirikko, with whom he initiated collaboration in the late 60s. Many other researchers from Oulu, including Professor and Vice Rector for Research Taina Pihlajaniemi, as well as University of Oulu alumni, the late academician and Professor Leena Palotie, Professor Aarno Palotie, Professor Leena Ala-Kokko, and Professor Helena Kuivaniemi, have made research visits to Prockop’s laboratory.

Darwin Prockop received numerous accolades and awards throughout his career, including the title of Foreign Academician of Science of the Research Council of Finland. He was also a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Medicine, as well as the inaugural recipient of the Career Achievement Award from the International Society for Cell and Gene Therapy.

In addition to being an outstanding researcher, Darwin Prockop was a warm-hearted and humorous individual who maintained connections with many colleagues and friends in Oulu. He will be deeply missed by his family, friends, and the extensive research community worldwide.

Honorary Doctors throughout history

Last updated: 5.2.2024