Some important biological concepts we've learned from phage

Phage played a major role in the development of the field of molecular biology. Use of phage as model systems for understanding general biological problems was stimulated by an informal collection of researchers called the "Phage group". After World War II, many physicists were attracted to biology and the relativity simplicity of phage seemed like an ideal place to begin to dissect complex biological questions like what is the nature of a gene, how do mutations affect genes, how do mutations arise, how do genes replicate, and how are genes expressed. Many of the newcomers to the new field of molecular genetics were first initiated to phage research in a summer "phage course" taught by Salvador Luria and Max Delbruck at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory.

A few important discoveries that relied upon phage research include:

Central dogma:
Molecular genetics:
Genetic regulation:
[If you think of other important examples that should be added, please let me know.]


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Last modified November 26, 2003