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This Week in Science History June 24
June 26, 2000 representatives of The Human Genome Project announced it had assembled a working draft of the human genome-the genetic blueprint of human beings. Two major tasks were involved in this accomplishment. Large fragments of DNA had to be placed in the proper order to cover all the human chromosomes, and the DNA sequencing of the fragments had to be determined. Although the draft contained some gaps and errors, it represented 95% of all genes. This was a phenomenal accomplishment in the world of genetics.
June 26, 1900 the Yellow Fever Commission was formed by Surgeon-General George M. Sternberg to fight the cause and spread of the deadly disease. Dr. Walter Reed who had previously investigated typhoid and malaria outbreaks was appointed officer-in-charge. While yellow fever is now known to be caused by a virus, it was believed at that time to be spread by direct contact with an infected person or things like the infected person’s clothes.
June 26, 1819 for all the cycling enthusiasts out there, the first U.S. patent for a velocipede, a predecessor of the bicycle, was issued to William K. Clarkson, Jr. of New York. Unfortunately, fire destroyed the patent record at the Patent Office in 1836 so very little else is known. It was not until 1866 that the first U.S. patent was issued for a bicycle. Check out the Bicycle of America Museum site for a great timeline on the bicycle and an alphabetical index.
Bicycle: The History