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Posts Tagged ‘gene-protein colinearity’

One gene, one protein

Larry H Bernstein, MD, FCAP, Vurator

Leaders in Pharmaceutical Intelligence

Series E. 2; 3.2

Charles Yanofsky
Morris Herzstein Professor of Biology, Emeritus

Yanofsky was recognized for his long career as a pioneering researcher and mentor when he was named one of eight recipients of the 2003 National Medal of Science, the country’s highest scientific honor.

Established by Congress in 1959, the National Medal of Science honors individuals for groundbreaking scientific research that has led to a better understanding of the world. The National Science Foundation administers the medals.

A member of Stanford’s Department of Biological Sciences faculty since 1958, Yanofsky was recognized as one of the most important molecular biologists of the 20th century. His major contributions include establishing the “one gene, one protein” relationship; demonstrating the RNA-based regulation of gene expression; and his early discovery of colinearity, the linear relationship between the structures of genes and their protein products, considered an essential element in revealing the details of the genetic code.

His subsequent experiments on the regulation of gene expression led to the discovery of transcriptional attenuation, a process that enables the gene regulatory machinery to fine-tune its response to subtle environmental cues. That work also revealed how alterations in RNA structure allow RNA to serve as a regulatory molecule in both bacterial and animal cells.

In 1964, Yanofsky and colleagues established that gene sequences and protein sequences are colinear in bacteria.[1] This had previously been demonstrated in humans by studies of sickle cell anemia.[2] Yanofsky showed that changes in DNA sequence can produce changes in protein sequence at corresponding positions.[3] His work revealed how controlled alterations in RNA structure allow RNA to serve as a regulatory molecule in both bacterial and animal cells.

Their work demonstrated that controlled alterations in RNA structure allow RNA to serve as a regulatory molecule in both bacterial and animal cells. His subsequent experiments on the regulation of gene expression led to the discovery of transcriptional attenuation, a process that enables the gene regulatory machinery to fine-tune its response to subtle environmental cues. That work also revealed how alterations in RNA structure allow RNA to serve as a regulatory molecule in both bacterial and animal cells.

Yanofsky was awarded the Selman A. Waksman Award in Microbiology from the National Academy of Sciences in 1972[4] and was co-recipient of the Louisa Gross Horwitz Prize from Columbia University in 1976 with Seymour Benzer. Yanofsky was elected a foreign member of the Royal Society in 1985 and was one of the recipients of the 2003 National Medal of Science awards.

awards National Medal of Science (2003)
Passano Award (1992)
Thomas Hunt Morgan Medal (1990)
Genetics Society of America Medal (1983)
Louisa Gross Horwitz Prize (1976)
Selman A. Waksman Award in Microbiology (1972)
Albert Lasker Award (1971)
NAS Award in Molecular Biology (1964)

Charles Yanofsky is now the Morris Herzstein Professor of Biology and Molecular Biology (Emeritus) at Stanford University.

Establishing the Triplet Nature of the Genetic Code

The following is an interview with Sydney Brenner, Distinguished Research Professor of Biology at The Salk Institute, La Jolla.

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