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Biological Chemistry

Chemical Breakthroughs Honored

August 11, 2014 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 92, ISSUE 32

On June 4, Rockefeller University was presented with a 2013 Citation for Chemical Breakthrough (CCB) Award for being the site of the discovery that DNA is the material of genes.

Sponsored by the ACS Division of the History of Chemistry, the CCB Awards recognize breakthrough publications, books, and patents whose advances in the chemical sciences are revolutionary in concept, broad in scope, and long-term in impact. The awards go to the institution where the work was performed.

The DNA discovery was made in 1944 and was reported by Oswald T. Avery, Colin M. MacLeod, and Maclyn McCarty in the Proceedings of the Journal of Experimental Medicine (1944,79,137). The finding came nearly a decade before James Watson and Francis Crick’s famous elucidation of the structure of DNA.

Other winners of the 2013 CCB Award include Matthew Meselson and Franklin W. Stahl’s paper on the replication of DNA in Escherichia coli (Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 1958,44, 671), to be presented to California Institute of Technology; Frederick Soddy’s paper on the discovery of isotopes (Nature 1913,92, 399), to be presented to the University of Glasgow, in Scotland; and Nikolay Zinin’s paper on the production of anilines from readily available precursors (Bull. Sci. pub. l’Acad. Imp. Sci. Saint-Pétersbourg,1842,10, 273), to be presented to Kazan Federal University, in Russia. Award ceremonies will take place later in 2014.

Linda Wang compiles this section. Announcements of awards may be sent to



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