From the Americas:
* if it proves difficult to form distinct layers of liquids, dissolve a little sugar in the curaçao.
* adjust these volumes for smaller tubes.
Others have suggested (unpublished data) that thin helical twirls of lime peel may be used to decorate the rim of the tube. More enterprising drinkers have tried to recover the nucleic acid from the gin, using a swizzle stick. We are not aware of the details of the results of these investigations.
Most of the 'D.N.A.' in the gin is probably pectin, although the method described here is strikingly similar to the 'Marmur preparation' used by molecular biologists throughout the world to prepare D.N.A. .
It has not escaped our notice that this cocktail contains significant amounts of alcohol and should, therefore, be consumed only by adults and in moderation.
We are much indebted to Peter Finegold for suggesting that we create a cocktail to celebrate the anniversary.
D. R. MADDEN
National Centre for Biotechnology Education
This figure is purely diagrammatic. The D.N.A. precipitates in the gin.
The following letter has been received:
With regard to your DNA cocktail recipe.
Chase conducted the now-famous 'Waring blender' experiment while still an undergraduate. Al Hershey wrote to Jim Watson about their as yet unpublished findings in April 1952, and Watson (who was by then working with Crick) reported them first to a meeting of the Society for General Microbiology in Oxford. Salvador Luria, another member of the phage group, was due to attend the meeting but like Linus Pauling had had his passport withdrawn by the US State Department during the McCarthy era, so it was left to Watson to bring the news.
Contemporary accounts suggest that the significance of the Hershey and Chase work was not appreciated by many present, although Watson was spurred on by the confirmation that DNA was the genetic material. Less than a year later he and Crick had the double helix.
An obituary of Martha Chase with more details and links to relevant Web sites may be found at: