Journal of the History of Biology 39 (1):125-163 (2006)

In the same year, 1961, Peter D. Mitchell and Robert R.J.P. Williams both put forward hypotheses for the mechanism of oxidative phosphorylation in mitochondria and photophosphorylation in chloroplasts. Mitchell's proposal was ultimately adopted and became known as the chemiosmotic theory. Both hypotheses were based on protons and differed markedly from the then prevailing chemical theory originally proposed by E.C. Slater in 1953, which by 1961 was failing to account for a number of experimental observations. Immediately following the publication of Williams 's hypothesis and before his own was published, Mitchell initiated a correspondence. Examination of the letters shows the development of a dispute based on the validity of the proposals, who should have priority and particularly whether Mitchell had drawn on Williams 's work without acknowledgement. We have concluded that Mitchell's proposals were original although it is evident that prior to the correspondence Williams had considered and rejected a proposition similar to Mitchell's theory. However, a major cause of the dispute was the difference in disciplinary backgrounds of Mitchell, a microbial biochemist and Williams, a chemist
Keywords bioenergetics  chemiosmotic hypothesis  chemiosmotic theory  Mitchell P.  originality  oxidative phosphorylation  plagiarism  priority  Williams R.J.P
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DOI 10.1007/s10739-005-3052-4
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References found in this work BETA

Scientific Discovery: Logic and Tinkering.Aharon Kantorovich - 1993 - State University of New York Press.
Integrating Scientific Disciplines.William Bechtel (ed.) - 1986 - University of Chicago Press.
L'histoire des Sciences Est-Elle Possible.S. Shapin - 1982 - History of Science 20:157-211.

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Emergence of Life.Bruce H. Weber - 2007 - Zygon 42 (4):837-856.
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