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Frederick Sanger & Colleagues Develop the Sanger Method of Rapid DNA Sequencing


In 1977 English biochemist Frederick Sanger and colleagues at the University of Cambridge independently developed a method for the rapid sequencing of long sections of DNA molecules. Sanger’s method, and that developed by Gilbert and Maxam, made it possible to read the nucleotide sequence for entire genes that run from 1000 to 30,000 bases long. Sanger sequencing was the most widely used sequencing method for approximately 25 years. 

In 1980 Sanger shared the 1980 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Walter Gilbert and Paul Berg. Paul Berg received half of the prize "for his fundamental studies of the biochemistry of nucleic acids, with particular regard to recombinant-DNA". The other half was split between Walter Gilbert and Frederick Sanger "for their contributions concerning the determination of base sequences in nucleic acids".  This was Sanger's second Nobel prize.

Sanger, F., Nicklen, S., and Coulson, A.R. "DNA Sequencing with Chain-Terminating Inhibitors," Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. (USA) 74 (1977) 546-67.

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