New Biological Effect of the Gases of the Helium Group

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Science  18 May 1962:
Vol. 136, Issue 3516, pp. 653-654
DOI: 10.1126/science.136.3516.653


The mold Neurospora crassa ATCC 5297a was grown in gaseous environments of helium, neon, argon, krypton, xenon, or nitrogen containing approximately 5 percent oxygen. A close correlation of the growth rate R (in millimeters per hour at 30°C) with the molecular weight MW of the chemically inert gas was observed. This correlation is described by the empirical equation: R = 3.88 - 0.1785 (MW).