James Watson: The Pathway to DNA

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About this talk
In an interview with Ron Vale, Jim Watson tells us how his scientific interest moved from studying birds to DNA. He describes his journey to Cambridge, his collaboration with Francis Crick, the events leading to the elucidation of the double helix model for DNA, and his current passion of understanding cancer. His story illustrates why it is critical to identify and focus on important scientific problems.

About the speaker
In 1953, Watson, along with his friend and colleague Francis Crick, elucidated a model for the double-helical structure of DNA. Together with Maurice Wilkins, Watson and Crick received the Nobel Prize in Medicine for Physiology in 1962 for this discovery. Watson has had a long association with the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory first as Director and then President, and also played a pivotal role in establishing the Human Genome Project.