Science and Violence: The Career of Amy Bishop

February 21, 2010


Born on April 24.


Fatally shot younger brother with a shotgun at their home in Braintree, Mass. Police reported it as an accident.


Graduated from Northeastern University, majoring in biology.


Earned a Ph.D. in genetics from Harvard University, based ­on research on the role of a chemical, PQQ, in cell survival and death.

Questioned by the police about mail bombs sent to Paul A. Rosenberg, then an assistant professor of neurology at Harvard University and a collaborator of Bishop's thesis adviser. No charges were brought.


Held a variety of positions at Harvard and affiliated hospitals.


Worked as a post­doctoral fellow and research associate at the Harvard School of Public Health, investigating the role of nitric oxide in cell survival and disease.


Accused of assault after a fight with another customer at an International House of Pancakes in Massachusetts.


Appointed assistant professor of biology, a tenure-track position, at the University of Alabama at Huntsville.


Published six papers in scientific journals. Other biologists who do similar work tend to publish more.


Prodigy Biosystems formed to market InQ, Bishop's cell incubator, with an internal microscope and camera, that can keep neurons alive for months for study.


Awarded National Institutes of Health grant to investigate genetic resistance to nitric oxide.

Invention of InQ lauded by the University of Alabama at Huntsville's president, David B. Williams, in his online blog.


In the spring, denied tenure. Bishop appeals.

In late fall, helped lead faculty attempt to censure President Williams.

Also in late fall, tenure appeal denied.


On February 12, Bishop allegedly opened fire with a handgun at a faculty meeting. Three people were killed, and she was arrested.