Denis Duboule was born in Geneva, Switzerland in 1955. Educated in biology at the University of Geneva, he worked at the medical school in Strasbourg and at the EMBL, Germany, before becoming Professor of Developmental Biology. He is currently Chairman of the Department of Zoology and Animal Biology in Geneva, and Director of the National Center of Excellence 'Frontiers in Genetics'. He is member of several societies, organistions and academias. He is editor of the journal Development and has received several national and international prizes, amongst which the Louis-Jeantet prize for Medicine (1998), the Marcel Benoist prize (2003) and the Grand Prix de Biologie Ch.-Léopold Mayer from the French Academy of Sciences (2004). He is actively involved in the communication of science through numerous TV and radio programmes as well as chronicles in newspapers. Duboule's scientific contributions are in the field of developmental genetics and evolution, in particular the study of the function and regulation of genes involved in vertebrate body patterning. For many years, he has been interested in understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying specific temporal processes at work during development.