James Watson

James Watson

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Caption: James Dewey Watson (born 1928), American molecular biologist, photographed in the year he co-discovered the structure of DNA. Watson entered the University of Chicago at 15, gaining his degree at 19. From 1951, he worked on the structure of DNA (deoxyrib- onucleic acid) at Cambridge University, England, with Francis Crick. They were aided by X-ray crystallography data from Franklin and Wilkins. In 1953, Watson and Crick worked out DNA's double helix structure. The sequence of paired chemical bases it contains forms the duplicable genetic code. Crick, Watson and Wilkins shared the 1962 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine.

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