Dorothy Hodgkin – 104th Birthday Google Doodle

Published by Gerald Ferreira Date: May 11, 2014

Today May 12, 2014 Google is celebrating the life and legacy of Dorothy Hodgkin’s with a Google Doodle on their Japan, Taiwan, Philippines, Indonesia, India, Saudi Arabia,  Kenya, South Africa, Egypt, United Kingdom, Canada and the United States of America search engine homepages.

Dorothy Hodgkins

Who was Dorothy Hodgkin?

Dorothy Mary Crowfoot was born on May 12, 1910 in Cairo Egypt. She was a scientist and chemist and are credited with the development of protein crystallography for which she received a Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1964 She were also the second woman to receive the “Order of Merit” in 1965. Florence Nightingale were the first women to receive the Order of Merit. She was also the first women to receive the Copley Medal, , a Fellow of the Royal Society, a winner of the Lenin Peace Prize, and was Chancellor of Bristol University from 1970 to 1988.

Dorothy Hodgkin

She was awarded an Honorary Degree (Doctor of Science) from the University of Bath in 1978.

Protein X-ray crystallography


X-ray crystallography is a tool used for determining the atomic and molecular structure of a crystal, in which the crystalline atoms cause a beam of incident X-rays to diffract into many specific directions.

By measuring the angles and intensities of these diffracted beams, a crystallographer can produce a three-dimensional picture of the density of electrons within the crystal. From this electron density, the mean positions of the atoms in the crystal can be determined, as well as their chemical bonds, their disorder and various other information.

X-ray crystallography of biological molecules took off with Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin, who solved the structures of cholesterol (1937), penicillin (1946) and vitamin B12 (1956), for which she was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1964. In 1969, she succeeded in solving the structure of insulin, on which she worked for over thirty years.

Dorothy Hodgkin's Google Doodle

Today’s Doodle is very inspirational and based on the Protein X-ray crystallography developments and contributions made by Dorothy Hodgkin. The Doodler responsible for the design of the Google Dooodle for Dorothy Hodgkin’s 104th birthday included the Molecular model of Penicillin which she completed in 1945.For more information on Dorothy Hodgkin's you can read the Wikipedia Article on her. The article provides some good insight into the life and legacy of this astonishing scientist!