Reconceiving the Gene Seymour Benzer's Adventures in Phage Genetics Frederic Lawrence Holmes, William C. Summers

Format:
Hardback
Publication date:
01 Jun 2006
ISBN:
9780300110784
Imprint:
Yale University Press
Dimensions:
352 pages: 235 x 156 x 27mm
Illustrations:
47 b-w illus.
Sales territories:
World

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This book relates how, between 1954 and 1961, the biologist Seymour Benzer mapped the fine structure of the rII region of the genome of the bacterial virus known as phage T4. Benzer’s accomplishments are widely recognized as a tipping point in mid-twentieth-century molecular biology when the nature of the gene was recast in molecular terms. More often than any other individual, he is considered to have led geneticists from the classical gene into the molecular age.
 
Drawing on Benzer’s remarkably complete record of his experiments, his correspondence, and published sources, this book reconstructs how the former physicist initiated his work in phage biology and achieved his landmark investigation. The account of Benzer’s creativity as a researcher is a fascinating story that also reveals intriguing aspects common to the scientific enterprise.

The late Frederic Lawrence Holmes was Avalon Professor and chair for the Section of History of Medicine at Yale University. William C. Summers is professor of therapeutic radiology and molecular biophysics and biochemistry, as well as lecturer in history, at Yale University. 
 

, October 2006