a story lives forever
Register
Sign in
Form submission failed!

Stay signed in

Recover your password?
Register
Form submission failed!

Web of Stories Ltd would like to keep you informed about our products and services.

Please tick here if you would like us to keep you informed about our products and services.

I have read and accepted the Terms & Conditions.

Please note: Your email and any private information provided at registration will not be passed on to other individuals or organisations without your specific approval.

Video URL

You must be registered to use this feature. Sign in or register.

NEXT STORY

The Operon model and genetics in France

RELATED STORIES

A discovery worthy of the Nobel prize
François Jacob Scientist
Comments (0) Please sign in or register to add comments
Il y en a beaucoup de trucs nobélisables à droite et à gauche. Alors il faut que ça fasse un peu plus de bruit que les autres. Et en fait ça, ça a fait beaucoup de bruit. En fait tout le monde- Le monde entier s'est excité sur ce modèle, et beaucoup trop. C'est-à-dire qu'ils ont- Les gens d'un peu partout, dans tous les domaines, que ce soit les types qui regardaient la synthèse des protéines par le foie de rat ou n'importe quoi, ce modèle a été appliqué à tout et n'importe quoi. Ce qui fait qu'au bout de quelques- de quatre, cinq ans, les gens ne pouvaient plus en entendre parler et que le modèle a été rejeté par tout le monde. Un effet de balancier un petit peu. Exactement. Mais c'est vrai. Et il a été rejeté de telle manière qu'au fond, il a été redécouvert un petit peu après. Au fond, il y a une période négative. Ah il y a une période négative. Oui, il y a eu une période où les gens n'y croyaient plus du tout. Et finalement, c'est revenu. Puis alors il y avait deux types là qui- Je ne sais plus comment ils s'appellent, qui faisaient aussi de la régulation- Et qui faisaient des modèles. Britton et Davidson Voilà. Britton et Davidson, qui faisaient des modèles complètement farfelus. Mais qui avaient beaucoup de succès. Oui, qui avaient beaucoup de succès, mais qui étaient complètement farfelus, qui n'avaient aucune base expérimentale. Mais beaucoup de succès. Alors ça, ça nous faisait du tort. Et ça devait vous énerver un petit peu. Pas trop, parce qu'on trouvait ça tellement dingue que ça nous a pas tellement énervé ! Vous les avez lu ces trucs là ? Je les ai vus. J'ai discuté avec des Américains, c'est curieux encore, ces modèles gardent une certaine aura. Et on se demande pourquoi parce qu'ils n'ont aucune liaison avec aucune donnée expérimentale. C'est très bizarre. Je pense que Davidson avait une position très forte. Oui, c'est ça. Et puis il parlait beaucoup, il était à tous les colloques, il inondait les colloques de sa théorie. Mais il n'en reste absolument rien. A mon avis, il n'en restait rien tout de suite.
There are many things that are potential Nobel prize winners here and there. So it needs to get noticed a little more than the others. And actually, it really caused a stir. In fact everyone- the whole world got excited about this model, and way too much. Meaning that they- people from almost everywhere, from every discipline, be it the guys who studied protein synthesis in rat liver or anything, the model was applied to everything and anything. Which means that after a few- after four-five years people couldn't stand to talk about it and the model was rejected by everyone. Something of a pendulum effect? Exactly. But it's true. And it was rejected to such an extent that, basically it was rediscovered a little later. There was a negative period. There's a negative period. Yes, there was a period when people didn't believe in it anymore. And eventually, it came back. And then there were these two guys- I don't remember what they're called, who were also working on regulation- and who were making models. Britton and Davidson. That's it. Britton and Davidson, who were making completely eccentric models. But who were very successful. Yes, who were very successful, but who were completely eccentric, who didn't have any experimental basis. But very successful. So which wasn't doing us any good. And it must have annoyed you a little. Not really, because we found it so crazy that it didn't really bother us! Have you read them? I've seen them. I had discussions with Americans, it's strange, these models have kept a certain aura. And we wonder why because they don't have any links with any experimental data. It's very strange. I think that Davidson had a very strong position. Yes, that's it. And he also talked a lot, he attended every conference, he flooded conferences with his theory. But there's absolutely none of it left. In my opinion, there was nothing there to start with.

François Jacob (1920-2013) was a French biochemist whose work has led to advances in the understanding of the ways in which genes are controlled. In 1965 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, together with Jacque Monod and André Lwoff, for his contribution to the field of biochemistry. His later work included studies on gene control and on embryogenesis. Besides the Nobel Prize, he also received the Lewis Thomas Prize for Writing about Science for 1996 and was elected a member of the French Academy in 1996.

Listeners: Michel Morange

Michel Morange est généticien et professeur à L'Université Paris VI ainsi qu'à l'Ecole Normale Supérieure où il dirige le Centre Cavaillès d'Histoire et de Philosophie des Sciences. Après l'obtention d'une license en Biochimie ainsi que de deux Doctorats, l'un en Biochimie, l'autre en Histoire et Philosophie des Sciences, il rejoint le laboratoire de Génétique Moléculaire dirigé par le Professeur François Jacob à l'Institut Pasteur. Ses principaux travaux de recherche se sont portés sur l'Histoire de la Biologie au XXème siècle, la naissance et le développement de la Biologie Moléculaire, ses transformations récentes et ses interactions avec les autres disciplines biologiques. Auteur de "La Part des Gènes" ainsi que de "Histoire de la Biologie Moléculaire", il est spécialiste de la structure, de la fonction et de l'ingénerie des protéines.

Michel Morange is a professor of Biology and Director of the Centre Cavaillès of History and Philosophy of Science at the Ecole Normale Supérieure. After having obtained a Bachelor in biochemistry and two PhDs, one in Biochemistry, the other in History and Philosophy of Science, he went on to join the research unit of Molecular Genetics headed by François Jacob, in the Department of Molecular Biology at the Pasteur Institute, Paris. Together with Olivier Bensaude, he discovered that Heat Shock Proteins are specifically expressed on the onset of the mouse zygotic genome activation. Since then he has been working on the properties of Heat Shock Proteins, their role in aggregation and on the regulation of expression of these proteins during mouse embryogenesis. He is the author of 'A History of Molecular Biology' and 'The Misunderstood Gene'.

Tags: Nobel prize, enzyme synthesis

Duration: 2 minutes, 4 seconds

Date story recorded: October 2004

Date story went live: 24 January 2008