In 1953, Watson and Crick published a paper: A Structure for Deoxyribose Nucleic Acid. Based on available data from X-ray diffraction patterns and 3D conceptualization through model building, Watson and Crick proposed that DNA is a double helix - a twisted ladder - with two phosphate-based backbones and "runged" nucleotides that pair. Their paper ended with this comment: It has not escaped our notice that the specific pairing we have postulated immediately suggests a possible copying mechanism for the genetic material.
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- ID: 15676
- Source: DNALC.DNAi
Animation of 2D DNA model becoming three dimensional.
James Watson and Francis Crick explain how they solved the structure of DNA. Erwin Chargaff explain how he measured the levels of each of the four nitrogenous bases.
How an X-ray diffraction pattern is created and how the DNA X-ray diffraction pattern can be interpreted to give the dimensions.
Because it contains the directions for assembling the components of the cell, DNA is often thought of as the "instruction book" for assembling life.
Deoxyribose and phosphate molecules form the uprights and nucleotide pair form the rungs of the DNA ladder.
James Watson talks about his partnership with Francis Crick.
James Watson and Francis Crick solved the structure of DNA. Other scientists, like Rosalind Franklin and Maurice Wilkins, also contributed to this discovery.
Rosalind Franklin and Raymond Gosling obtained this X-ray diffraction pattern, which triggered the idea that DNA was a helix.
DNA base pairs
1953 picture of Francis Crick (L) and James Watson (R) walking along the backs of King's College in Cambridge.