Oral history of British science

Klug, Aaron (Part 23 of 31). National Life Stories Collection: General

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  • Subjects

    Biophysics; Chemistry

  • Recording date

    2002-10-29, 2002-11-03, 2002-11-20, 2002-11-27

  • Recording locations

    MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Cambridge

  • Interviewees

    Klug, Aaron, 1926-, (speaker, male)

  • Interviewers

    Thompson, Katherine (speaker, female)

  • Abstract

    Talk about patenting - AK explains complications, examples of misuse of patenting. Going back in time: AK got involved in Alzheimer project in 1986 in organisational capacity but later got involved scientifically. Started reading about it and explains how his interest evolved. Talk about symptoms in younger people - details about brain changes observed - comparisons to senile dementia. Talk about tests which can distinguish between the two. Age at which Alzheimer can occur. Martin Roth came to see AK and explained research done on post mortem. AK explains chemical observations - suggests reasons for cell death - explains. Wischik moved here and started work on it. AK describes methods they used in research finding marker - explains. Wischik started work using electron microscopy 1985-87. AK got interested, found they did not use fresh brain but preserved in formalin - stopped formalin use and AK suggested deep freeze instead, and suggested making antibodies as markers. AK re-explains details of this work. Michel Goedert joined group. Cloned genes - explains outcome - results published in 1998. AK explains practical experimental use in following patients. Others found mutations in amyloid precursor proteins - but AK does not accept that this is the primary cause of the disease, rather it is the formation of abnormal aggregates of (??) protein, as discovered by Klug's group. There is a biochemical link with the production of amyloid protein.

  • Description

    Nobel Prize-winning chemist Aaron Klug in conversation about his life and work. Klug is most famous for his research into crystallographic electron microscopy.

  • Related links

    Visit this interviewee's page on the 'Voices of Science' web resource

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