Marc Trevor Tessier-Lavigne (born c. 1960) is a Canadian-American neuroscientist who is the executive vice president for research and the chief scientific officer at Genentech. He has been named to assume the post of president of Rockefeller University in New York City as of March 1, 2011. Tessier-Lavigne will succeed Nobel laureate Paul Nurse and will be the first non-academic to assume the post.
Tessier-Lavigne was born in Trenton, Ontario. He grew up in Europe from ages 7 to 17, where his father was serving with NATO as part of the Canadian Armed Forces. He earned his first undergraduate degree from McGill University, where he majored in Physics and attended the University of Oxford on a Rhodes Scholarship, where he "first encountered the nervous system and fell in love with it" and earned a B.A. in Philosophy and Physiology. Tessier-Lavigne was awarded a doctorate in physiology from University College London. He was hired by Genentech in 2003 as its senior vice president, Research Drug Discovery, after teaching at the University of California, San Francisco from 1991 to 2001 and at Stanford University starting in 2001. He cited the firm's "potential to create breakthrough therapies for unmet medical needs" as his reason for leaving academia. His research on the development of the brain has uncovered details of how Alzheimer's disease is triggered.