Saturday, 24 March 2012 09:52

Francis Crick and James D. Watson: Men of Ideas

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Francis Crick (1916-2004) was an English molecular biologist. James D Watson (1928- ) is an American molecular biologist.

Crick and Watson are noted for been the co-discoverers of DNA in 1953, for which they won the Nobel Prize in Biology in 1963.

According to his biography, Crick was interested in how molecules make the transition from non-living to living things and how the brain makes the conscious mind. Apparently, he succeed in the former and failed in understanding the later, for no one has understood how the brain makes consciousness, mind.

Crick and Watson worked hard and eventually showed how genes in the DNA employ four letters, A, T, G, and C, to sequence the entire body’s activities, and to program every part of the body to do what it does. Genes are, apparently, information systems, sort of like software, programs in the body, and are responsible for what every part of the body does.

Crick and Watson were able to show how each parent contributes 23 chromosomes to form 46 chromosomes from which everything in the human body is done. Those forty six chromosomes, apparently, contain the genetic code that programs the body do what it does. As in all things, where all goes well the body functions as it should but given the number of genes in the human cell, over 100, 000, some are bound to be malfunctioning and sometimes code for diseases. Understanding how diseases are produced by malfunctioning genes appears a necessity in learning how to cure many diseases either through medications and or through genetic engineering that improves the identified malfunctioning genes.

A lot has been written on the work of Crick and Watson that we really do not need to rehash that material here. For our present purpose, Crick and Watson made seminal contribution to biological science in discovering how the DNA and RNA work.

REFERENCES

S. Chomet (Ed). DNA Genesis of a Discovery. (1994)

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Ozodi Osuji Ph.D

Ozodi Thomas Osuji is from Imo State, Nigeria. He obtained his PhD from UCLA. He taught at a couple of Universities and decided to go back to school and study psychology. Thereafter, he worked in the mental health field and was the Executive Director of two mental health agencies. He subsequently left the mental health environment with the goal of being less influenced by others perspectives, so as to be able to think for himself and synthesize Western, Asian and African perspectives on phenomena. Dr Osuji’s goal is to provide us with a unique perspective, one that is not strictly Western or African but a synthesis of both. Dr Osuji teaches, writes and consults on leadership, management, politics, psychology and religions. Dr Osuji is married and has three children; he lives at Anchorage, Alaska, USA.

He can be reached at: ozodiosuji@gmail.com (907) 310-8176