ArticlesPresent and Future Frontiers of the Sciences

Frontiers of the biological sciences

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  04 Jul 1980:
Vol. 209, Issue 4452, pp. 78-89
DOI: 10.1126/science.7025206


The history of the molecular revolution in biology is described, emphasizing its dependence on the emergence of bacterial genetics, the fusion of genetics and biochemistry, and the development of greatly improved techniques for studying macromolecules. Central concepts have included molecular information transfer, both by nucleic acids and by allosteric proteins; the spontaneous conversion of one-dimensional information into three-dimensional structures; and the extraordinary unity in the molecular mechanisms underlying the rich diversity of biology. The merging of molecular and morphological studies, to yield the very broad field of cell biology, is described more briefly, as are also some present frontiers in several areas of biology that present challenges at other levels of organization.