Rosalind Elise Franklin was an English chemist and X-ray crystallographer who made contributions to the understanding of the molecular structures of DNA, RNA, viruses, coal, and graphite. She is best known for her role in the discovery of the structure of DNA, and for her pioneering use of X-ray diffraction. Franklin used X-ray diffraction techniques on DNA fibers. She, along with her student Raymond Gosling, took pictures of DNA and discovered that there were a dry “A” form and a wet “B” form. One of their X-ray diffraction pictures of the “B” form of DNA became famous, and was used as critical evidence in identifying the structure of DNA. However, Watson and Crick took most of the credit for Franklin’s findings, which sparked a credit controversy. Despite this, Rosalind Franklin became a huge inspiration to many women and girls, and continued her work by publishing 17 papers on viruses, which laid the foundations for structural virology.

Rosalind Franklin is an example of how men continue to take responsibility for the innovative and strenuous work that women have completed. We, as women, are strong and deserve equal opportunities, pay, recognition, etc.

Rosalind Franklin

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