How greatest biological discovery of 20th century got passed over

Sunday, May 21, 2023 - 14:32 in Earth & Climate

Harvard microbiologist Richard Losick is still teaching at age 80 and did so Saturday, telling an audience of well over 100 at Harvard’s Northwest Building the story of DNA’s discovery — the real story — one of insights ahead of their time, of recognition denied and buried by incorrect dogma, and of credit eventually going to another. The tale was compelling enough itself, bearing lessons not just about the science of life that Losick has loved and passed on to others for decades, but also about the unpredictability of science — like any enterprise — once humans get involved in it. The bonus for the crowd, though, was the revered scientist telling it. The Maria Moors Cabot Professor of Biology has been at Harvard for 55 years, arriving as a junior fellow in 1968. On Saturday the microbial community came together for the Harvard Microbial Sciences Initiative’s 20th annual Microbial Sciences Symposium,...

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