Jim Roberts is a biologist at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, and an affiliate professor of biochemistry at the University of Washington. Jim received his Ph.D. degree from the Department of Biochemistry and Institute of Cancer Research at Columbia University in 1984, conducting his research in the laboratory of Richard Axel. He received his M.D. degree from the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. He joined the Hutchinson Center in 1984 as a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Harold Weintraub, Ph.D. and became a faculty member at the Hutchinson Center in 1988. He was named Director of the Basic Sciences Division in 2004.
Roberts has made many significant contributions in the field of cell cycle research, notably the discovery of key proteins that regulate cell division, and how modifications of those proteins control their activities. He has also explored alterations in cell cycle proteins in cancer cells and how these changes might be informative in the treatment of specific cancers. Currently his research focuses on the development of mouse models of human cancers. Jim serves on the editorial board of several top journals, including Cell, is a consultant to biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies that are developing cancer therapeutics, and is a founder of a biotechnology company that is applying recent advances in our understanding of cell division to the development of new agricultural products.