Aaron to the new, Medical Research CouncilLaboratory

Aaron KlugAaron Klug was born in 1926 in Želva, Lithuania. He did not stay there long though. Himand his family moved to South Africa was Klug was just two years old. He stayed there forcollege until moving to England to attend the University of Cambridge to finish his PhD. Whenhe was 27 he moved to Birkbeck College where he started working with Rosalind Franklin. Ithink that Klug did not have a problem working with other people. I think he and his partnersbenefitted from their partnership.

Klug was inspired by Franklin to start working withcrystallography. Franklin was using her photos to try and discover the structure of DNA.Personally, I like working without people because I can get other opinions and ideas.

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Two brainsare better than one, but it can be hard to work together sometimes. During his time at Birkbeckhis interest in viruses sparked and there he discovered the structure of the tobacco mosaic virus,an RNA virus that affects plants. 11 years later he moved to the new, Medical Research CouncilLaboratory of Molecular Biology. There, he used X-ray diffraction, microscopy and structuralmodelling to create crystallographic electron microscopy, which is where a pattern of two-dimensional images of crystals taken from different places are put together to make a 3D imageof the crystals. He was awarded with a Nobel Prize for Chemistry for his work investigatingvirus structures and developing crystallographic electron microscopy. He was also knighted byElizabeth II for his works in chemistry and microbiology.

Klug was also a part of many highranking societies and labs. He was the director of the Lab of Microbiology, president of theRoyal Society, and was a member of the Board of Scientific Governors, the Scripps ResearchInstitute, and the Advisory Council for the Campaign for Science and Engineering.His works in crystallography are still used to today, and have been used in many virusand protein studies. Klug, along with his partners, was the first to determine the structure of RNAusing crystallographic electron microscopy. Later in his life, Aaron Klug and Francis Crickpublished a paper together about diffractions by helical structures.

Klug worked well with otherscientists and people in general. Before he retired, Klug taught undergraduate students. Thisleads me to why some competition can be helpful.

Klug was good at working with others, butthat did not apply to some of the people he worked with. People such as Rosalind Franklin andFrancis Crick had very large amounts of competition between each other. Some of thiscompetition helped fuel their progress and made them motivated to finish first.

Conversely, ifthey did not have their competition, they may have discovered the structure of DNA quicker.Their competition stopped Franklin and Crick from sharing their ideas and work which slowedprogress. Without competition, they would have shared their work and thought about thingstogether, which would have accelerated their progress. Overall, Aaron Klug’s work contributedto much of the modern science that we have today.


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