Morgan, Thomas Hunt

views updated May 18 2018

Morgan, Thomas Hunt (1866–1945) US geneticist, who held professorships at Bryn Mawr College (1891–1904), Columbia University (1904–28), and the California Institute of Technology (1928–45). He established that chromosomes were the carriers of Mendel's `factors' of inheritance (genes). Working with fruit flies (Drosophila), he demonstrated the phenomenon of linkage and modified Mendel's law of independent assortment by stating that this could only apply to genes located on different chromosomes. He showed that linkage could be broken by crossing over and went on to produce the first chromosome maps. For his work Morgan was awarded the 1933 Nobel Prize for physiology or medicine.