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"A Celebration of Forty Years of Bacterial Conjugation and Thirty-Five Years of Bacterial Transduction held at Caspary Auditorium on May 16, 1986" (Zinder Presentation)

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11 Norton Zinder. Unlike most thesis presentations, we are not going to have a question period. Now, I can’t possibly introduce myself. What I’ll do instead, is give you my pedigree. Genetically , that’s more important. All right. Because we’re a very tight knit group here today, Ed Tatum’s three students are here -- Josh, Ed Adelberg and Barbara. I’m Josh’s student so I have a father, an aunt and an uncle here today and that’s my scientific pedigree. We’re pretty close. Now, I arrived in Josh Lederberg’s lab in early July 1948 and once again, Francis Ryan had intervened. He was my advisor at Columbia and he had sent me to Joshua who had just gone out to the University of Wisconsin as a young assistant professor. And I mean young, Josh was 23 and I was 19, I think at the time. An interesting time. It was rather remarkable, now that I think about it. Josh put me to work looking for mutants and that’s exactly what I do to new students in my laboratory these days. The first thing they get to do in the laboratory is to look for mutants. There’s only one difference. In 1948, there were no ways to get mutants or bacteria. In real ways, anyhow, now there are enough ways, in fact, now you really don’t need a graduate student. 12 You have a machine that does it for you for the most part. And there was a technique that I was given to use and that was to plate E coli on a minimum medium and you let them grow up so a few hundred colonies per plate, so you mark every colony. This in the University of Wisconsin -- in Wisconsin, it’s a hot summer. Everything is wet and hot. And then you pour over a layer of complete medium, on top of this, and anything that comes up afterwards, obviously is a mutant that has growth factor requirement. Well, by the beginning of August, I was exasperated. And I can’t say what Josh must have felt by then because I had not isolated a single mutant. But everything was contaminated. I should note that I never had a course in

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