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Obituary: Prof Bastien Gomperts

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Bastien Gomperts

Professor Bastien Gomperts (1936-2013), who died on the13th October after a short period of ill health, spent almost his entire career at UCL. Starting with a BSc in Chemistry in 1960 he went on to obtain his PhD at UCH Medical School. Following a brief visit to the US in 1968-69 he joined the Department of Experimental Pathology, which later merged with the Physiology Department where he remained until retirement. In the course of his research, he made major contributions to the understanding of cell signalling mechanisms, in particular in the regulation of exocytotic secretion in cells of the immune system, with particular emphasis on mast cells, where he demonstrated roles for calcium and GTP-binding proteins. He achieved wide recognition for this work which has led to many further studies. He was also a memorable teacher and the author of two textbooks. In person, he had an active family life and wide-ranging interests in music, photography and the visual arts. After his retirement he took up cabinet-making, creating elegant furniture and beautiful boxes. He is survived by his wife, Zerin, daughters Natasha and Miranda, and five grandchildren.

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