Pontecorvo, Guido Pellegrino Arrigo, 1907-1999, geneticist and Professor of Genetics, University of Glasgow,

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Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo(1907-1999), who liked to be known by his nickname, Ponte, was an Italian geneticist who became the University of Glasgow's first Professor of Genetics in 1955, and has been described as "one of the founding fathers of modern genetics". He endowed prizes and scholarships for students at the University and the Genetics Building was named for him in 1995. Born and educated in Pisa, Pontecorvo was forced to leave Italy in 1938 and settled in Scotland. He was appointed a lecturer in Genetics at the University's Zoology Department in 1945, and a new department was set up in the Anatomy laboratories of the Anderson College building soon afterwards. He became a Reader in 1952, three years before his appointment to the new Chair. He left Glasgow in 1968 to take a post at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund's laboratories in London. Pontecorvo was one of the leading figures of his day in the study of of cell genetics. For a more detailed biography see the full Pontecorvo collection description.

From the guide to the Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, material relating to Pontecorvo's research trips abroad, 1962-1993, (Glasgow University Archive Services)

From the guide to the Papers of Guido Pontecorvo, personal and family photographs and negatives, c1924-2007, (Glasgow University Archive Services)

From the guide to the Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, publications, 1938-2000s, (Glasgow University Archive Services)

From the guide to the Papers of Guido Pontecorvo, research photos and slides, 1950s-1980s, (Glasgow University Archive Services)

Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo (1907-1999), who liked to be known by his nickname, Ponte, was an Italian geneticist who became the University of Glasgow's first Professor of Genetics in 1955, and has been described as "one of the founding fathers of modern genetics". He endowed prizes and scholarships for students at the University and the Genetics Building was named for him in 1995. Born and educated in Pisa, Pontecorvo was forced to leave Italy in 1938 and settled in Scotland. He was appointed a lecturer in Genetics at the University's Zoology Department in 1945, and a new department was set up in the Anatomy laboratories of the Anderson College building soon afterwards. He became a Reader in 1952, three years before his appointment to the new Chair. He left Glasgow in 1968 to take a post at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund's laboratories in London. Pontecorvo was one of the leading figures of his day in the study of of cell genetics. For a more detailed biography see the full Pontecorvo collection description.

From the guide to the Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, biographical material, 1917-2007, (Glasgow University Archive Services)

From the guide to the Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, personal and family papers, c1915-2007, (Glasgow University Archive Services)

From the guide to the Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, career and appointments, 1939-1975, (Glasgow University Archive Services)

From the guide to the Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, lectures and broadcasts, 1946-1995, (Glasgow University Archive Services)

Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo (1907-1999), who liked to be known by his nickname, Ponte, was an Italian geneticist who became the University of Glasgow's first Professor of Genetics in 1955, and has been described as "one of the founding fathers of modern genetics". He endowed prizes and scholarships for students at the University and the Genetics Building was named for him in 1995. Born and educated in Pisa, Pontecorvo was forced to leave Italy in 1938 and settled in Scotland. He was appointed a lecturer in Genetics at the University's Zoology Department in 1945, and a new department was set up in the Anatomy laboratories of the Anderson College building soon afterwards. He became a Reader in 1952, three years before his appointment to the new Chair. He left Glasgow in 1968 to take a post at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund's laboratories in London. Pontecorvo was one of the leading figures of his day in the study of of cell genetics. For a more detailed biography see the full Pontecorvo collection description.

Pontecorvo's earlier research was concerned with animal breeding and radiation effects and genetics of speciation with Drosophila. He made significant contributions to cattle breeding in Tuscany where he organized a wide-ranging programme of recording and selective breeding for milk yield and draught ability in two regional cattle breeds. When he came to Glasgow Pontecorvo's main interests were in mitotic genetics, mutation theories, gene regulation and recombination and what Pontecorvo himself liked to call "Parasexual cycle genetics". Pontecorvo's two main contributions to genetics were his discovery of the parasexual cycle in fungi, which led him to develop methods of genetics analysis that became the foundations of what is now known as somatic cell genetics. The Parasexual Cycle was successfully patented in 1954 and was the first patent to be issued in any jurisdiction for a natural biological process. Pontecorvo's second major contribution to genetics was his work on intragenic recombination and his seminal paper titled Genetic formulation of gene structure and gene action (1952), on the organisation of the genetic material. This paper proposed a new theory of the gene a year before Watson and Crick's famous discovery of the structure of DNA.

From the guide to the Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, genetics research correspondence, Jan 1945-Jun 1992, (Glasgow University Archive Services)

Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo(1907-1999), who liked to be known by his nickname, Ponte, was an Italian geneticist who became the University of Glasgow's first Professor of Genetics in 1955, and has been described as "one of the founding fathers of modern genetics". He endowed prizes and scholarships for students at the University and the Genetics Building was named for him in 1995. Born and educated in Pisa, Pontecorvo was forced to leave Italy in 1938 and settled in Scotland. He was appointed a lecturer in Genetics at the University's Zoology Department in 1945, and a new department was set up in the Anatomy laboratories of the Anderson College building soon afterwards. He became a Reader in 1952, three years before his appointment to the new Chair. He left Glasgow in 1968 to take a post at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund's laboratories in London. Pontecorvo was one of the leading figures of his day in the study of of cell genetics. For a more detailed biography see the full Pontecorvo collection description.

Aside from genetics Pontecorvo's life long passion was alpine plant photography and ecology. He set aside each summer for pursuits to some of the world's most spectacular alpine regions, and his collection contains thousands of slides of alpine flowers and their habitats which he was using to research a book on plants at high altitudes (sadly this was never finished). He visited various mountains and national parks in the USA in the 1950s and 1960s, in the 1970s he travelled to Iran to study the flora of the Fars region and Mt Elburz. He explored the Himalayas in India and the Tien Shan and Kunlun mountains in China in the 1980s. These trips were organized with the help of The Royal Society or at the invitation of local academies and were often combined with lecture tours and courses. Ponte often made excursions to mountains a precondition for accepting invitations.

From the guide to the Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, alpine plant research correspondence, c1950s-1996, (Glasgow University Archive Services)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn Papers of Malcolm Andrew Ferguson-Smith, biographical material, 1957-2008 Glasgow University Archive Services
creatorOf Papers of Guido Pontecorvo, personal and family photographs and negatives, c1924-2007 Glasgow University Archive Services
referencedIn Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, geneticist, Professor of Genetics, University of Glasgow, Scotland, 1917-2007 Glasgow University Archive Services
creatorOf Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, personal and family papers, c1915-2007 Glasgow University Archive Services
creatorOf Papers of Guido Pontecorvo, research photos and slides, 1950s-1980s Glasgow University Archive Services
creatorOf Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, genetics research correspondence, Jan 1945-Jun 1992 Glasgow University Archive Services
creatorOf Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, career and appointments, 1939-1975 Glasgow University Archive Services
creatorOf Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, lectures and broadcasts, 1946-1995 Glasgow University Archive Services
creatorOf Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, material relating to Pontecorvo's research trips abroad, 1962-1993 Glasgow University Archive Services
referencedIn Papers of Malcolm Andrew Ferguson-Smith, correspondence from 1987-1998, 1987-2001 Glasgow University Archive Services
creatorOf Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, alpine plant research correspondence, c1950s-1996 Glasgow University Archive Services
referencedIn Papers of Malcolm Andrew Ferguson-Smith, correspondence from 1965-1975, 1964-1976 Glasgow University Archive Services
referencedIn Papers of Malcolm Andrew Ferguson-Smith, correspondence from 1961-1964, 1959-1965 Glasgow University Archive Services
creatorOf Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, biographical material, 1917-2007 Glasgow University Archive Services
creatorOf Papers of Guido Pellegrino Arrigo Pontecorvo, publications, 1938-2000s Glasgow University Archive Services
Role Title Holding Repository
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associatedWith Jain, S K, fl 1970s, Doctor, Botanical Survey of India, Botanical Gardens, Howrah, India, person
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associatedWith Marcello, Siniscalco, fl 1950s-1990s, geneticist, person
associatedWith Marmur, Julius, 1926-1996, molecular biologist, person
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associatedWith National Institute of Medical Research, 1913-, corporateBody
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associatedWith Nuti, Vittoria, 1928-, geneticist, person
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associatedWith Pateman, John A, 1926-2011 geneticist, University of Glasgow, Scotland, person
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associatedWith Pinter, Harold, 1930-2008 playwright, actor, director, person
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associatedWith Polunin, Oleg, 1914-1985, botanist, person
associatedWith Pontecorvo, Bruno, 1913-1993, nuclear physicist, person
associatedWith Pontecorvo, Guido Pellegrino Arrigo (1907-1999 : geneticist and Professor of Genetics : University of Glasgow, Scotland person
associatedWith Pontecorvo, Leonore (1904-1986) person
associatedWith Porter, Rodney Robert, 1917-1985, Professor of Biochemistry, University of Oxford, person
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associatedWith University of Milan, 1924-, corporateBody
associatedWith University of Peradeniya, 1942-, corporateBody
associatedWith University of Pisa, corporateBody
associatedWith University of Pisa, 1343-, corporateBody
associatedWith University of Tehran, 1934-, corporateBody
associatedWith Varadarjan, Srinivasan, 1928-, President, Indian Academy of Sciences, Bangalore, India, person
associatedWith Venkataraman, B, fl 1980s, Professor, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Bombay, India, person
associatedWith Waddington, Conrad Hal, 1905-1975, biologist, paleontologist and geneticist, person
associatedWith Waelsch, Salome Gluecksohn, 1907-2007, geneticist, person
associatedWith Waelsh, Salome Glueksohn, 1907-2007, geneticist, person
associatedWith Watson, James Dewey, 1928-, molecular biologist, geneticist, and Nobel Prize winner, person
associatedWith Westergaard, Mogens, 1912-1975, geneticist, person
associatedWith White, Abraham, 1908-1980, biochemist, person
associatedWith Wiersma, Klass, 1917-1993, minister and professor of law, person
associatedWith Wikramanayake, Eugene Ramyawathie, fl 1980s-2000s geneticist and anatomist, person
associatedWith Wikramanayake, T W, fl 1980s-2000s, person
associatedWith Wilkins, Maurice Hugh Frederick, 1916-2004, physicist, person
associatedWith Wilson, Charles Hayne, 1909-2002, Knight; Principal, University of Glasgow, Scotland, person
associatedWith Wilson, Richard H, fl 1980s-2010s geneticist, University of Glasgow, Scotland, person
associatedWith Wollman, Elie, 1917-2008, molecular biologist, person
associatedWith Wolstenholme, Gordon Ethelbert Ward, 1913-2004, Knight, physician, charity director, and promoter of public health care, person
associatedWith Woods, Donald Devereux, 1912-1964, microbiologist, person
associatedWith World Health Organisation, 1948-, corporateBody
associatedWith Yuill, John L, 1940s-1970s, person
associatedWith Yu, Li Xue, fl 1980s, Professor, Shihezi Agricultural College, Shanghai, person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Glasgow (Scotland)
Glasgow (Scotland)
Glasgow (Scotland)
Glasgow (Scotland)
Glasgow (Scotland)
Glasgow (Scotland)
Glasgow (Scotland)
Glasgow (Scotland)
Glasgow (Scotland)
Glasgow (Scotland)
Subject
mountains,
Genetics
photographic slides,
academic teaching personnel,
Birthdays
Awards
animal genetics,
Occupation
Function

Person

Birth 1907

Death 1999

Related Descriptions
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Ark ID: w6zq98w4

SNAC ID: 37368539