Nettie Maria Stevens (1861-1912)

July 7th, 2016 | by Jane Wortham
Nettie Maria Stevens (1861-1912)

On this day, July 7th, we recognize Nettie Maria Stevens.

Specialized chromosomes determine gender.

Nettie Maria Stevens and Edmund Beecher Wilson both independently developed the idea of sex determination by chromosomes. Their work established the importance of chromosomes in heredity and helped Thomas Hunt Morgan interpret the early genetic results from Drosophila.

Nettie Stevens was one of the principal female researchers to become well known in the natural sciences. She was conceived in Cavendish, Vermont. Her family settled in Westford, Vermont. Stevens’ dad was a craftsman and jack of all trades. He welled enough to possess a lot of Westford property, and could bear to send his youngsters to class.

Stevens was a splendid understudy, reliably scoring the most elevated in her classes. In 1896, Stevens went to California to go to Leland Stanford College. She graduated with an experts in science. Her postulation included a ton of tiny work and exact, cautious itemizing of new types of marine life. This preparation was a variable in her prosperity with later examinations of chromosomal conduct.

After Stanford, Stevens went to Bryn Mawr School for more graduate work. Thomas Chase Morgan was all the while educating at Bryn Mawr, and was one of her teachers. Stevens again did as such well that she was recompensed an association to concentrate abroad. She set out to Europe and invested energy in Theodor Boveri’s lab at the Zoological Establishment at Würzburg, Germany. Boveri was chipping away at the issue of the part of chromosomes in heredity. Stevens likely built up an enthusiasm for the subject from her sit tight.

In 1903, Stevens got her Ph.D. from Bryn Mawr, and began searching for an examination position. She was in the end given an assistantship by the Carnegie Organization in the wake of shining proposals from Thomas Chase Morgan, Edmund Wilson and M. Carey Thomas, the president of Bryn Mawr. Her work on sex determination was distributed as a Carnegie Establishment report in 1905. In this first study she took a gander at sex determination in supper worms. Later, she concentrated on sex determination in a wide range of types of bugs.

Stevens’ assistantship at Bryn Mawr still implied that she needed to instruct. She needed an immaculate exploration position, and kept in touch with Charles Davenport to check whether it was feasible for her to work at his Station for Trial Science. Lamentably, Stevens kicked the bucket of bosom disease in 1912 preceding she could involve the exploration residency made for her at Bryn Mawr, or work with Davenport at Frosty Spring Harbor.

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