Rosalind Franklin

Chemist and Molecular Biologist Rosalind Franklin

Full Name: Rosalind Elsie Franklin
Profession: Chemist and Molecular Biologist

United Kingdom

Biography: As co-discoverer of the structure of DNA and for the controversy surrounding the lack of credit given to her role in the discovery.

She provided key insights into DNA structure by capturing "Photograph 51" of the "B" form of DNA in 1952 while at King's College in London.

This work formed the basis for James Watson, Francis Crick, and Maurice Wilkin's famous DNA model that resulted in their Nobel Prize in 1962.

Born: July 25, 1920
Birthplace: Notting Hill, London, England

Generation: Greatest Generation
Chinese Zodiac: Monkey
Star Sign: Leo

Died: April 16, 1958 (aged 37)
Cause of Death: Ovarian cancer

Historical Events

  • 1951-10-23 English chemist Rosalind Franklin first identifies the two types of carbon produced by temperature, in paper published by the Royal Society
  • 1953-02-28 Francis Crick and James Watson discover the chemical structure of DNA-molecule (double-helix polymer) using studies of x-ray diffraction developed by Rosalind Franklin and Maurice Wilkins
  • 1958-04-17 Brussels World Fair opens in Belgium, with a model by chemist Rosalind Franklin who had died of cancer the day before

Biographies and Sources