Avenger of the Week | Rosalind Franklin

photo credit: MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology [ CC BY-SA 4.0 ],  via Wikimedia Commons

photo credit: MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Rosalind Elsie Franklin, chemist and X-ray crystallographer, led the team that produced Photo 51, which revealed the structure of DNA, and it is still considered the most important image ever taken by many.

As commenters on a recent Facebook post reminded the Nobel Prize this week, Franklin was left off the list of authors when the structure of DNA was published in 1953. The three men involved, James Watson, Francis Crick, and Maurice Wilkins, shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for discovering the structure of DNA. Franklin’s contribution was finally acknowledged by Watson 15 years later.

Franklin went on to conduct groundbreaking research on the structure of viruses until her death in 1958, which her colleague continued, eventually winning a Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1982. We can only imagine what Franklin would have accomplished had she lived beyond the age of 37.

This week we recognize the critical yet overlooked contributions of scientist Rosalind Franklin who pioneered DNA and virus research in the 1950s. #AvengerOfTheWeek #GenderAvenger https://www.genderavenger.com/blog/avenger-of-the-week-rosalind-franklin