Walther Flemming (1843-1905)
Walther Flemming was born in Sachsenberg, Mecklenburg, now in Germany. He was a military physician during the Franco-Prussian War. Flemming held positions at the University of Prague (1873-76), and at the University of Kiel (1876-1901).
Flemming was one of the first to devote his time to cytology, the study of chromosomes. Cell division had been described as early as 1842 by Carl Nageli, who thought it was an anomalous event. Flemming was the first to detail the chromosomal movements in the process of mitosis. In 1879, Flemming used aniline dyes, a by-product of coal tar, to stain cells of salamander embryos. He was able to visualize the threadlike material as the cells divide. He described the whole process in his book Zell-substanz, Kern und Zelltheilung (Cell-Substance, Nucleus, and Cell-Division), which was published in 1882. Much of what we know today about mitosis originated with Flemming's observations. He saw that chromosomes were "doubled" when they appeared in prophase, and "solved" the problem of chromosomal partitioning between mother and daughter cells. This was significant for later work in meiosis and the chromosomal theory of inheritance.
In 1882, Walther Flemming published the definitive study of the cellular process of mitosis.
walther flemming, chromosomal theory of inheritance, franco prussian war, aniline dyes, process of mitosis, theory of inheritance, meiosis, chromosomes,cytology, cell division
- ID: 16235
- Source: DNALC.DNAFTB
DNAFTB Animation 7: Walther Flemming explains the phases of mitosis.
DNAFTB Problem 8: Take a look at human chromosomes.
Walter Sutton described the process of meiosis. He also showed that although chromosomes may look similar, they have specific hereditary qualities.
An overview of the discovery of cell division, mitosis.
DNAFTB Animation 8: Theodor Boveri presents chromosomes' role in development.
Study of meiosis revealed the chromosomal basis of gender.
Thomas Hunt Morgan established the chromosomal theory of inheritance. He used fruit flies with eye color mutations to demonstrate sex-linked inheritance patterns.
Thomas Hunt Morgan (1933 winner of the Nobel Prize for Medicine for his work on the chromosomal theory of inheritance), with his daughters, Isabel (left) and Lilian (right), 1920.
Theodor Boveri described the process of meiosis. He also showed that although chromosomes may look similar, they have specific hereditary qualities.
DNAFTB Animation 9:Nettie Stevens and Edmund Wilson explain how gender is determined by special chromosomes.