Erwin Chargaff Facts

Erwin Chargaff Facts
Erwin Chargaff (11 August 1905 to 20 June 2002) was an Austrian biochemist and a professor of biochemistry at Columbia University medical school.
Interesting Erwin Chargaff Facts:
Erwin Chargaff was born in Czernowitz in Austria-Hungary, now Chernivitsi, Ukraine.
During World War I his family emigrated to Vienna where he earned his doctorate from the Vienna University of Technology ( Technische Universitat Wien) in 1928.
From 1928 to 1930 Chargaff did post doctoral work at Yale University as a Milton Campbell Research Fellow.
He returned to Germany in 1930 and accepted a post in chemistry in the department of bacteriology at the University of Berlin .
He resigned from the University in 1933 when the Nazi regime excluded Jews from teaching positions.
He moved to Paris and from 1933 to 1935 he was a research associate at the Pasteur Institute.
In 1935 he immigrated to New York and worked as a research assistant at Columbia University and in 1940 he became an American citizen.
In 1952 he became a full professor at Columbia University and served as department chair from 1970 to 1974.
He published many papers on using chromatographic techniques to study nucleic acids.
He began to study DNA in 1944 after Oswald Avery identified it as the basis of heredity.
In 1950 he discovered that the percentages of nucleotide pairs in DNA is roughly the same with 30.9% adenine, 29.4% thymine, 19.9% guanine and 19.8% cytosine.
The second Chargaff rule states that the relative amounts of adenine, thymine, guanine and cytosine in DNA varies from one species to another.
Chargaff shared his chromatographic findings with Francis Crick and James Watson at Cambridge in 1952 which helped them uncover the double helix structure of DNA.
After they received the 1962 Nobel prize for their work on DNA, Chargaff was bitter about not being credited for his work, withdrew from his lab and wrote extensively about his exclusion.


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