HISTORY OF DNA
BY TAYLOR COURTNEY
Below are some important scientists that made remarkable discoveries about DNA and its structure.
In his experiments, Mendel uncovered two policies, which turned out to be some of the most foundational policies of biology.
1. The Law of Segregation
2. The Law of Independent Assortment
A group of botanists conducted the same experiment and found that his results were originally published in 1866. They gave Mendel the credit for the discovery.
Many scientists disagreed with Mendel's ideas completely, but he is still widely recognized as the "father of modern genetics."
In his experiment, he used mice and two strains of pneumonia. One of the dangerous strains was killed, but it transferred its DNA into the other non-infectious strain, infecting it and proving Griffith's theory or transformation. At this time, Griffith did not know what caused the change.
Griffith's experiment also allowed other scientists to realize that DNA (and not protein) was the molecule that held information.
Avery's work allowed other scientists to further study the structure of DNA.
In 1945, Avery was awarded the Copley Medal for work in microbiology and, more importantly, his remarkable discovery that explained so much for the scientific world.
Four bases make up the DNA molecule. In 1950, he published a piece that said in any living species, the ratio of adenine to thymine and cytosine to guanine within these bases had to be equal. These became known as Chargaff's ratios. They work for any living thing; the only difference is the number of C-G pairs and A-T pairs.
The discovery was also made that C could only pair with G, and T can only pair with A. Therefore, C is the complementary base pair for G, and vice versa.
This clue significantly helped the science community understand the structure of DNA.
Rosalind worked with Maurice Wilkins, a fellow scientist, for a time. She also worked with a student, Raymond Gosling, and captured two pictures of DNA, concluding that what she saw was probably a helix and that the phosphate were outside of the main structure.
In 1953, both Franklin and Wilkins simultaneously published pieces on the x-ray data, not knowing that the other was doing so as well.
Later, further studies proved the Watson-Crick theory of DNA structure to be true.
In 1960, he was awarded the Albert Lasker Award by the American Public Health Association, along with Watson and Crick.
After meeting Crick and after one failed attempt in guessing the structure of DNA in 1951, Watson and Crick concluded the structure of DNA, a double helix, in 1953.
Along with Crick and many other awards, Watson was awarded the Research Corporation Prize in 1962.
In 1954, Crick earned a PhD in physics, after having previously postponed it due to war.
In more recent years, Crick has done research on protein synthesis, the genetic code, and mutation with S. Brenner.