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Medical Subject Headings (MeSH):
"Creating Life in the Test Tube," 1959-1970
Letter from Arthur Kornberg to Van R. Potter (July 5, 1960)
May 18, 1960
In an earlier letter you suggested that I modify my DNA Model Kit so as to separate the double strand into single strands.
I finally thought of a simple way to do this utilizing the connectors I use to plug in my loudspeakers at various points in
my home. These connectors are #321 Moseley 300 ohm polarized plugs available from any electronics distributor for about 10
cents per plug. They can be cemented to the colored nucleotide pairs using polystyrene cement. By using polarized connectors
it is possible to completely code the pairs so that a prong = NH and a hole is a = o or -N=. By setting the connectors l/4
inch over the midline for purines and l/4 inch back of the midline for pyrimidines the coding can be complete. Moreover the
pre-existing color code provides extra insurance for proper coding,
I am enclosing 4 pairs for your examination. Please use a screw-driver to separate the nucleotides if they stick at first.
I also enclose a template that was used to mark the pairs so they could be properly cut into mononucleotides.
Do you think a supplemental sheet of directions would be appreciated by users of the Kit?
Please note that the nucleotides will now be strung on two wires using the holes I had drilled in the plugs, and you can now
have a double strand opened at either or both ends, with new strands forming on the opened parts.