Barton was born in New York City, New York on May 7, 1952. She married fellow scientist Peter B. Dervan in 1990 and has one daughter, Elizabeth E.
Barton is a contemporary biochemist on the cutting edge of DNA and RNA research. She is well educated and highly decorated. She received her BA from the prestigious Barnard College for women, in 1974. She went on to receive her Ph.D. in chemistry from Columbia University by 1979. Barton has received honorary degrees from four other colleges. To date she has earned nine major honors and awards from 1985-1995.
1985 - Alan T. Waterman Award
1986 - Nat Fresenius Award, Phi Lambda Upsilon
1987 - Eli Lilly Award in Biochemistry from Am. Chem. Society
1988 - Award in Pure Chemistry
1991 - Baekel and Medal
1992 - Garvan Medal
1995 - Tolman Medal; Having a Medal; Karrer Medal
While Barton was teaching at Columbia University from 1983-1989 she was an associate editor of the book Biotechnology and Materials Science: Chemistry for the Future. This publication by the Am. Chem. Society offers readers outside of the realm scientific research, a look into how Biochemistry affects various aspects of our lives. The little book covers medical advances in AIDS to how new Polymers are being developed. Barton pens the first chapter, "What is Biochemistry?" Who would be her future husband, pens chapter three; "Synthetic Tools for Molecular Biology". Teachers will find this book to be an inspiration for teaching the value of chemical study and how those advances affect out human biology.
You can access some of Bartons research at her email and Web address at Cal. Tech. It is called the Barton Group Web Site and the address is firstname.lastname@example.org.