DNA – Genes – the units of inheritance (1/10)
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DNA – Genes – the units of inheritance (1/10)

But where were the genes? What genes are made of
remained a mystery but some scientists
thought they knew where they were. Chromosomes – curious filaments
in the nucleus of each cell behaved a bit like genes. You get one from each parent
and pass one on to each offspring. Chromosomes contain protein, as well as a rather boring molecule
called deoxyribonucleic acid, DNA for short. Most people were convinced that
if chromosomes held the genes then protein was the place to look because noting else
was complicated enough. Fred Sanger is the only person ever
to have received two Nobel Prizes in the same subject. He remembers
just how unpromising DNA seemed. When I started working in the 1940s, DNA was thought to be just something
that was in the nucleus and probably a structural thing but the composition of it
was much too simple to imagine that it had much biological activity.

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