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Happy Birthday DNA!

Cartoon of DNA birthday wishes

It was 60 years ago today that Drs. Watson and Crick’s paper describing the model of the DNA was published in Nature. The double-helix structure was based on an X-ray diffraction image taken by Rosalind Franklin.

Did you know that lots of DNA drawings are actually backwards? The “normal” DNA is right-handed, or clockwise. If you see a DNA strand going counter-clockwise, it’s actually called Z-DNA. So next time you see a DNA strand, pay attention to the direction of the spiral. To many scientists, seeing the flipped DNA is like seeing a grammatical error.


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