Letter from Arthur Kornberg to Donald S. Fredrickson
Item is a photocopy.
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1977-02-25 (February 25, 1977)
Fredrickson, Donald S.
National Institutes of Health (U.S.)
Original Repository: Stanford University Libraries. Department of Special Collections and University Archives. Arthur Kornberg Papers
Reproduced with permission of Arthur Kornberg.
Medical Subject Headings (MeSH):
Astonishing Machines of Replication: Stanford, 1970-Present
Box Number: 3
Folder Number: 3
February 25, 1977
First I want to tell you how pleased I am that the Secretary of HEW retained you as Director and, as reported in Science,
made gestures of strong support for the NIH. It's a fine start.
I realize that the issue of recombinant DNA research is even more troublesome than it was in June of last year when we last
met in San Francisco and talked about it. I was shocked then by the ugly tone of Sinsheimer's address to the American
Society of Biological Chemists and by the warm response it received from an audience that should have been revolted by it.
In the interim it has become even clearer to me that what we now must fear most, is not the remote possibility of biological
warfare, but instead the war on biology. If we succumb through weakness or confusion to the forces who are attacking scientific
inquiry in the U.S., I am certain that the frontiers of genetic research will develop elsewhere (e.g., Soviet Union, China,
Israel) and will provide a refuge for American scientists. This is a lesson from history that does not need to be learned
painfully still again.
My best wishes for your efforts on behalf of reason and the national welfare.