History of Biotechnology

  • Microoganisms and cells

    Microoganisms and cells
    Robert Hooke founded cells and Anton Van Leeuwenhoek observed the first microorganisms through microscopes.
  • Laws of Inheritance

    Laws of Inheritance
    Gregor Mandel discovered the simple laws of inheritance of traits that allowed one to predict the outcome of crossses with certian traits.
  • Johann Miescher

    Johann Miescher
    Johann Miescher found nucleic acid in white blood cells from pus in bandages, which later led to scientists to believe that DNA might be the inheritable material of an organism.
  • DNA

    Studying fruit flies. Thomas Hunt Morgan discovered that genes were on chromosomes.
  • Genetic Material

    Genetic Material
    Sir Alexander Fleming isolated penicillin from a fungus. Many of his ideas are used to develop biotechnology drugs today.
  • Chargaff

    Chargaff showed that in DNA the number of units of adenine equaled those of thymine and the number of units of cytosine equaled those of guanine.
  • One gene produces one enzyme

    One gene produces one enzyme
    Beadle and Tatum proposed the "one gene produces one enzyme" hypothesis.
  • Establishment

    Avery, McCarty, and McLeod established that indeed DNA was the hereditay material that was transferred.
  • Hereditary Material

    Hereditary Material
    Using thier famouss "blender experiment," Hershey and Chase proved viruses replicater using DNA and confirmed the role of DNA as the hereditary material.
  • Structure of DNA

    Structure of DNA
    Watson and Crick discovered the structure of DNA.
  • plasmid DNA

    plasmid DNA
    Walter Gilbert discovered the mechanism or gene expression through his study of messenger RNA
  • bacterial enzymes

    bacterial enzymes
    Arber, Nathans, and Smith discovered bacterial restirction enzymes that cut DNA.
  • discovery of cohons

    discovery of cohons
    Khorana and Nirenberg discovered the 64 codons (triplet code of 3 bases in DNA) that code for the 20 amino acids making up protiens.
  • Plasmids

    DNA plasmids were isolated and purified by Vinograd.
  • Escherichia coli

    Escherichia coli
    Madel and Higa were responsible for the first transformation of the bacterium Escherichia coli.
  • Cloning

    Cloning experiments were conducted by Boyer and Chen.
  • Genentech

    Genentech, the wrold's first engineering company, was founded.
  • Guidelines

    140 scientists met to draw up guidelines for work with recombinant DNA in microorganisms. Paul Berg was a key organizer.
  • Read DNA

    Read DNA
    Sanger and Gilbert found a way to sequence DNA. Given an unknown piece of DNA, they were able to read the correct orrder of bases of adenine, cytosine, guanine and thymine.
  • Synthetic insert

    Synthetic insert
    boyer inserted a sunthetic insulin gene into E. coli.
  • RFLP

    Botstein found that one could be identified by the pettern made of one's DNA through a digest by different enzymes. This DNA fingerprint was called a Restriction Fradment Length Polymorphism (RFLP).
  • Vitro Fertilization

    Louise Joy Brown was born, the first human baby resulting from in vitro fertilization, in which spern and egg are joined in a petri dish. The egg is later implanted in a womb.
  • Huge biotech start up

    The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that genetically altered life forms can be patented. This resulted in a huge startup of biotech companies.
  • First Transgenic Animals

    First Transgenic Animals
    Ohio Univercity scientists made the first transgentic animals.
  • Human insulin gene

    Human insulin gene
    Eli Lilly Company placed a human insulin gene inside bacteria.
  • Agrobacterium-mediated gene transfer

    Agrobacterium-mediated gene transfer
    Schell, Chilton, Van Montagu, Fraley, and Horsch transformed plants with Agrobacterium-meciated gene transfer.
  • PCR

    Kary Mullis invented polymerase chain reaction (PCR) to amplify DNA in the laboratory.
  • RFLP in DNA

    RFLP in DNA
    Jefferies applied RFLP in DNA profiling to the study of criminal cases.
  • automated fluorescence sequencer

    automated fluorescence sequencer
    An automated fluorescence sequencer was invented,speeding up the labor-intense process.
  • Gene gun

    Gene gun
    Genes were moved into an organism throught the use of a gene gun.
  • Greenhouses

    NIH revised safety guidlines for recombinant DNA to include plants grown in greenhouses and animals raised in barns.
  • C.elegans

    Andrew Fire and Craig Mello discovered RNA interfence, silencing of genes, in the worm C.elegans.
  • MAb

    Kohler, Milstein, and Jerne used monoclonal antibody (MAb) technology,
  • YACs

    Maynard Olson and colleagues at Washington University invented "yeast artificial chromosomes," or YACs, which are expression vectors for large protiens.
  • Dolly

    Ian Wilmut cloned Dolly the sheep from an adult cell of an ewe at the Roslin Institue in Scotland.
  • DNA chip

    DNA chip
    DNA microarray (DNA chip) techology, looking at the expression of all the genes of an organism at one time on a microscope slide or silicon chip, was develped.
  • Automated DNA sequencer

    Automated DNA sequencer
    Dabiri and Garner invented an automated DNA sequencer that had a capability or sequencing 76,800 base pairs per hour, 5 to 30 times faster than exsting sequencers. Technology like this greatly sped up the human genome project.
  • riboswitch

    Ron Breaker coined the term riboswitch for part of an mRNA molecule that can regulate its own activity and therefore gene expression.
  • Project complete

    Project complete
    announcement was made of the completion of the human genome project (initiated in 1990) by Francis Colllins and Craig Venter. the prject provided the ability to find genes adn gave rise to the sequencing of other genomes.