Dec. 8, 1924 – Nov. 22, 2003
From Today In Science History:
Smith was an English microbiologist who was a pioneer in the field of nucleic acid research. He helped to establish the structure of RNA and to discover the methylation of the bases in bacterial DNA. The RNA structure information was crucial to the double-stranded model of DNA proposed by Watson and Crick.
He contributed to the methodology involved in the unravelling of the secrets of the genome. In the early 1960s, Smith became involved in unravelling the process whereby the sequence of bases in DNA determines the assembly of the different amino acid sequences of proteins which are responsible for all our bodily functions (structural, enzymatic, hormonal, and so on), a process known as protein synthesis.