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People at UCL: Michael White and Wolfgang Kuehne


Going to work with JBS Haldane at UCL
Avrion Mitchison Scientist
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Having secured a place, I didn't see the point in staying at school, although that would've been the normal thing, I think. So, I asked my uncle if I could come and work for him in University College, which I did. He said, yes. So that was in the last year of the war and that covers the, whatever it was, from 1944 to 1945. And that was marvellous. I was what was called a Lab Boy then. And I became, and so far as I know I still am, a Life Member of the University College Servants group or society or union, whatever it was. And I found these wonderful characters to attach myself to. To Hans Kalmus who was rescued from the Prague emigration, I suppose, by University College, and probably by Jack in particular, and he was running a little Drosophila the lab there. And I helped him. We were- there was a little publication that was- where we got it wrong. We were trying to find out whether there was the phenomenon of resistance to CO2, and the question was whether it was propagated through the germ line or not, and we thought we'd tested that by transplanting gonads and we didn't know how to transplant gonads. So that was enormous fun. We converted a- what there was lots of, towards the end of the war, were bits of aeroplanes which were no longer needed. So we'd got to have had this aeroplane altimeter and we would solder that together and reproduce that for injecting these flies. Then, I- Hans Kalmus went on to be a Professor in University College where he was for a long time. And indeed, he was on the Appointments Committee when I went back to- to University College after- whenever it was, 1970 or so.

Avrion Mitchison, the British zoologist, is currently Professor Emeritus at University College London and is best known for his work demonstrating the role of lymphocytes in tumour rejection and for the separate and cooperative roles of T- and B-lymphocytes in this and other processes.

Listeners: Martin Raff

Martin Raff is a Canadian-born neurologist and research biologist who has made important contributions to immunology and cell development. He has a special interest in apoptosis, the phenomenon of cell death.



Listen to Martin Raff at Web of Stories



Duration: 2 minutes, 36 seconds

Date story recorded: June 2004

Date story went live: 24 January 2008