Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

X-Ray Crystallographic Measurements on a Single Crystal of a Tobacco Necrosis Virus Derivative


IN August 1944, N. W. Pirie, of Rothamsted, sent us a few large crystals of a tobacco necrosis virus derivative (Rothamsted strain)1 on which we have been able to make some X-ray measurements. Before we could complete the investigation the preparation unfortunately deteriorated, but the crystals are in themselves so remarkable that it seems worth while to give a preliminary account of their characteristics. They are described as of a crystalline derivative rather than as crystals of the virus itself, since by the time the preparation had crystallized it had lost its infectivity. It shows, however, the same serological and ultracentrifugal behaviour as the active material and so probably does not differ greatly from this2. The molecular weight indicated by the sedimentation constant is at least 1,850,000, and this order of magnitude is confirmed by our present measurements.

This is a preview of subscription content

Access options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.


  1. 1

    Bawden, F. C., and Pirie, N. W., Brit. J. Exp. Path., 23, 314 (1942).

    Google Scholar 

  2. 2

    Bawden, F. C., and Pirie, N. W., to be published shortly.

  3. 3

    Ewald, P. P., Z. Krist., 56, 129 (1921).

    Google Scholar 

  4. 4

    Bernal, J. D., Proc. Roy. Soc., A, 113, 117 (1926).

    ADS  CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  5. 5

    Bernal, J. D., and Fankuchen, I., J. Gen. Physiol., 25, 111 (1941).

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  6. 6

    Ogston, A. G., private communication.

Download references

Author information



Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

CROWFOOT, D., SCHMIDT, G. X-Ray Crystallographic Measurements on a Single Crystal of a Tobacco Necrosis Virus Derivative. Nature 155, 504–505 (1945).

Download citation

Further reading


By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.


Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing