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The Joshua Lederberg Papers

Letter from R. A. Brink to Joshua Lederberg Annotation pdf (196,660 Bytes) ocr (5,150 Bytes)
Letter from R. A. Brink to Joshua Lederberg
Number of Image Pages:
2 (196,660 Bytes)
1947-07-19 (July 19, 1947)
Brink, R. A.
Lederberg, Joshua
Reproduced with permission of Joyce Brink.
Lederberg Grouping: No Epoch
Box Number: 4
Folder Number: 29
Unique Identifier:
Accession Number:
Document Type:
Letters (correspondence)
Physical Condition:
Series: Academic Career, 1925-1999
SubSeries: University of Wisconsin
SubSubSeries: Department of Genetics
SubSubSubSeries: History
SubSubSubSubSeries: Correspondence
Folder: Recruitment of Lederberg, 1947-1950, 1973-1975, 1986
Metadata Last Modified Date:
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Annotation by Joshua Lederberg:
Node: Brink, Royal Alexander (Aleck); Chairman of Genetics Department
at U-Wisconsin, and played a major affirmative role in my own career
from 1947 on;  His life is well covered in his own memoir, and in the
NAS Biogr Memoir Series: vol. 66, also available online
 at ....
September 16, 1897 -- October 2, 1984
By Oliver E. Nelson, Jr., and Ray D. Owen
    ROYAL ALEXANDER BRINK, over a long career, was a major contributor
to the development of genetics and to the improvement of major crop
plants through the application of genetic principles. He is best
remembered for his last major contribution, the identification and
investigation of paramutation in maize--a fascinating phenomenon
that contradicts the genetic axiom that contrasting alleles always
segregate unaltered from their association in a heterozygous

His basic contributions to genetics began with his appointment to
the faculty at the University of Wisconsin in 1922 and continued
for many years after his retirement in 1968. Using maize as his
principal experimental organism, Alex Brink and his students
demonstrated that a gene could be expressed postmeiotically in the
pollen grain, reported the first explanation for semi-sterility,
and mapped many mutants. In investigations of seed failure in
interspecific crosses, Brink and D. C.  Cooper demonstrated the
critical role of the endosperm in normal seed development.

His laboratory also made early and important contributions to the
study of transposable elements by showing that the unstable P-vv
allele of maize resulted from the insertion of a transposable
element, Mp, in a functional P allele and that Mp was the same

KW: OCR; opening discussion of my possible appointment;

jl 7/24/99