Website Search

Flash Player may be required. Please install and enable Flash.

ID 15333

Linus Pauling' s manuscript describing incorrect triple helix, Peter Pauling

Interviewee: Peter Pauling. In 1952, Peter Pauling was a student at Cambridge when his father, Linus, sent him a paper proposing that DNA was a triple helix. James (Jim) Watson eagerly read the paper and realized that Pauling got it wrong. (DNAi Location: Code > Finding the Structure > Players > Linus Pauling > The triple helix)
As I say, when this manuscript arrived, Jim tore it from my pocket and opened it and read it and they discovered, you know, that it was wrong. And my nephew asked a few years ago, why did you make it three strands, and he said well, he didn't know, he didn't know how much water was in it and he didn't know the diameter, he had a rough, rough information of the diameter. And the mistake he, that it wasn't an acid, he told my nephew that was just a mistake, you know, he temporarily lost his marbles.
dna double helix,pauling linus,linus pauling,father linus,peter pauling,triple helix,jim watson,james watson,dnai,location code,interviewee,marbles,nephew,strands,manuscript,diameter,mistake,cambridge
Creative Commons License This work by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

Related content:

15451. Linus Pauling's incorrect model of the DNA structure, James Watson
James Watson describes the triple helix model proposed by Linus Pauling.
15512. Linus Pauling's triple DNA helix model, 3D animation with basic narration
Although the chemistry was wrong, Linus Pauling's triple-stranded DNA model was a catalyst for James Watson and Francis Crick to solve the structure of DNA.
15453. Linus Pauling was wrong about the DNA structure, James Watson
James Watson talks about how he and Francis Crick felt about Pauling's helix.
16021. Linus Pauling, 1953
In 1952, Linus Pauling proposed a triple-stranded helix structure for DNA.
16435. Video 19: James Dewey Watson, clip 4
Linus Pauling's triple-helix model for DNA and the reaction to this incorrect model.
15697. Linus Pauling (1970s)
Linus Pauling, circa 1970s.
16422. Animation 19: The DNA molecule is shaped like a twisted ladder.
James Watson and Francis Crick explain how they solved the structure of DNA. Erwin Chargaff explain how he measured the levels of each of the four nitrogenous bases.
15601. DNA
15280. After the discovery of the double helix structure, Sydney Brenner
Sydney Brenner talks about James Watson's work on RNA.
15454. Whose name went first on the Nature paper?, James Watson
James Watson talks about how he and Francis Crick decided whose name went first on the 1953 paper.
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
CSHL HomeAbout CSHLResearchEducationPublic EventsNewsstandPartner With UsGiving