Our Radio Show and blog celebrates the life and work of Dr. Edward L. Tatum, American Noble Prize Winner, Biochemist, researcher, professor, husband, father, grandfather, and musician.

 Many of the world’s biochemists, scientists, medical doctors, mathematicians, writers, and teachers have studied and played musical instruments since they were children. These eminent individuals have integrated music into their thinking process. Included are two articles on the power of classical music for healing.

We are dedicating this Father’s Day to honoring men who are scientists, medical doctors, engineers, mathematicians, teachers, and musicians. These eminent individuals have integrated music into their thinking process. Music is a powerful tool for motivating, inspiring, educating and soothing pain. Remember no one is immune to the power of music! Parents remember to have classical music on your family’s iPod or iPhone. Our article of the month is “When You Emerge From Your Home, Will You See Your Shadow?”   by Madeline Frank, Ph.D.

Radio Show Feature Question for June 2020: How did Classical music play a part of Dr. Edward L. Tatum’s life as an American Noble Prize Winner, biochemist, researcher, professor and musician and what musical instruments did he play?



Early Years:

Edward L. Tatum was born in Boulder, Colorado on December 14, 1909 to Arthur Lawrie Tatum and Mabel Webb Tatum. He was the oldest of three children. His father, Arthur earned his Medical degree and a Ph.D. in pharmacology. Edward’s mother, Mabel “was one of the first women to graduate from the University of Colorado. Edward would become a research scientist, his brother a physician, and his sister a nurse.”

Studying a Musical Instrument: Edward’s father Arthur played the French horn and the flute. Edward played both the French horn and the Trumpet. Music would be a lifelong pursuit.


University/ Graduate School:

Edward attended the University of Chicago for two years “before transferring and completing his undergraduate work at the University of Wisconsin.” He studied as a geology major before changing his major to chemistry in his senior year. Edward Tatum earned his A.B. degree in Chemistry in 1931, his Master’s in 1932 in Microbiology, and his Ph.D. in 1934 in Biochemistry from the University of Wisconsin. His dissertation was “on the cellular biochemistry and nutritional needs of a bacterium.”


Marriage and Children:

Dr. Edward Tatum married June Alton on July 28,1934 in Wisconsin. He worked as a research assistant in biochemistry at the University of Wisconsin for one year. They had two daughters, Margaret and Barbara .

University of Utrecht in the Netherlands 1936 to 1937: Post Graduate Studies:

In Dr. F. Kogl’s lab, he “investigated the nutritional needs of bacteria and fungi”. (Dr. Kogl “had identified the vitamin biotin” (hair, skin, and nails).

While working in Holland Dr. George Beadle, geneticist, contacted Dr. Tatum, biochemist, about collaborating with him “to identify the enzymes responsible for the inherited eye pigments of Drosophila.” Dr. George Beadle was seven years older than Dr. Tatum.

Moving back to United States in 1937 he became a Research Associate at Stanford University:  

Dr. Edward Tatum and Dr. George Beadle worked together on the Drosophila project and “determined that kynurenine was the enzyme responsible for the fly’s eye color and that it was controlled by one of the eye-pigment genes.”

Drs. Tatum and Beadle continued their research and “settled on a pink mold that grows on bread neurospora crassa ” because “it reproduced very quickly, its nutritional needs and biochemical pathways were already well known, and it had the useful capability of being able to reproduce both sexually and asexually. This last characteristic made it possible to grow cultures that were genetically identical and also to grow cultures that were the result of a cross between two different parent strains.”


They “began with biochemical processes they understood well: the nutritional needs of neurospora. By exposing cultures of neurospora to X rays, they would cause genetic damage to some bread mold genes. If their theory was right, and genes did indeed control biochemical reactions, the genetically damaged strains of mold would show changes in their ability to produce nutrients. If supplied with some basic salts and sugars, normal neurospora can make all the amino acids and vitamins it needs to live except for one (biotin).”

They “proved that the mutation was a genetic defect, capable of being passed to successive generations and causing the same nutritional mutation in those offspring. The X-ray bombardment had altered the gene governing the enzyme needed to promote the production of vitaminB6.”


Drs. Edward Tatum and George Beadle, in 1941 “offered conclusive proof that each biochemical reaction in the cell is controlled via a catalyzing enzyme by a specific gene. The “one gene-one enzyme” theory changed the face of biology and gave it a new chemical expression.”



During WWII producing Penicillin:

From their work with pink bread mold Dr. Tatum and Dr. Beadle were able to produce large quantities of penicillin from another mold during WWII.

Dr. Tatum in 1944 “served as a civilian staff member of the U.S. Office of Scientific Research and Development at Stanford. Industry, too, used the methods the men developed to measure vitamins and amino acids in foods and tissues.”

Moving to Yale University:

At the end of WWII, He “accepted an appointment at Yale University as an associate professor of botany.” In 1946, he created “a new program” becoming a professor of microbiology. He continued his research that he began at Stanford. “At Yale, Dr. Tatum demonstrated that the one gene-one enzyme theory applied to yeast and bacteria as well as molds.”


Dr. Tatum working with Joshua Lederberg in March 1946:

In March 1946 Dr.Tatum began researching with Joshua Lederberg. “Lederberg, a Columbia University medical student, fifteen years younger than Tatum and was at Yale during a break in his medical school curriculum.”

They “began studying the bacterium E. coli . At that time, it was believed that E. coli reproduced asexually. The two scientists proved otherwise. When cultures of two different mutant bacteria were mixed, a third strain, one showing characteristics taken from each parent, resulted. This discovery of biparental inheritance in bacteria, which Tatum called genetic recombination, provided geneticists with anew experimental organism. Again, Tatum’s methods had altered the practices of experimental biology.”


In 1948 Dr. Tatum returns to Stanford as professor of biology:

Stanford University’s new administration invited Dr. Tatum to the biology department. He “helped establish the department of biochemistry.”

1956 Dr. Tatum becomes professor of biochemistry & head of department: Dr. Tatum relocated “the Stanford Medical School from San Francisco to the university campus in Palo Alto.”  Tatum and his wife June divorce. He later marries Viola Kantor in New York City.


Jan. 1957 Moving to Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research (now Rockefeller University):

Dr. Tatum worked to “support young scientists”. His research continued .. to understand the genetics of neurospora and the nucleic acid metabolism of mammalian cells in culture.”


Nobel Prize: Dr. Edward L. Tatum “won his 1958 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for studying links between bread mold’s genes and enzymatic reactions.”

Dr. Edward L. Tatum was an American Noble Prize Winner, Biochemist, researcher, professor, husband, father, grandfather, and lifelong musician. He continued his research to look for more discoveries to help mankind and supported“young scientists”.


When You Emerge From Your Home, Will You See Your Shadow?  By Madeline Frank, Ph.D.

Most people are discovering a “new normal” and have changed habits and goals. While every day may seem like the movie Ground Hog Day, you can pull several excellent lessons from this 1993 classic.

The movie Ground Hog Day stars Bill Murray as Phil Connors, a TV weatherman and Andi MacDowell as Rita Hanson, news producer. Phil has for several years been assigned to this small town to report on the end of winter, Groundhog Day with Punxsutawney Phil.

Phil sees this small town as beneath him and sees himself as above all of this. The next day he wakes up at his hotel as if the day before has not happened. He is in a time loop, an endless repeat of the same day!

Does this sound familiar to you?

Does every day seem like the one before?

What are you doing to improve your life and that of your family during these dark days?

Are you moving items from your someday list to your do it now list?

At first Phil doesn’t accept responsibility for anything, and lives like a college freshman who just received their first taste of freedom. He indulges in binge eating and drinking, reckless driving, one-night stands, and robbery. Each day has no consequences, as if he is in a time loop.

The Realization:

Instead of living a self-indulgent life, Phil decides to pursue things he really wants.

Phil has always had an attraction to his news producer, Rita. He tries and fails to court her and is depressed and desperate to end the loop. He also tries to kill himself and even kidnaps Punxsutawney Phil.

The most valuable take-away from this segment was that he decides to pursue something he wants, instead of talking about it…even if he fails.

What are some of the things on your someday list?

Have you begun learning that musical instrument or language you have always wanted to learn?

The Transformation:

Phil chooses to take responsibility for himself and his actions and decides to better himself and take action on the items that have long been on his someday list.

On Phil’s list was to learn to play the piano. He takes lessons on the piano, practices, and realizes he possesses musical talent!

He also has always wanted to learn French, so he puts in the effort and does. He learns to sculpt ice, he decides to help others. He begins by asking them questions to find out what they dream about and want! Then he begins helping them get it!

In a restaurant a man is choking and Phil steps in to save him. He befriends a homeless man, takes care of him, and takes him to the hospital.

He asks questions about the people around him wanting to know about them to help them realize their dreams. He helps them to show he cares about others. He’s become a better man because of this “Time Loop”.

How are you helping others?

Phil really likes Rita and asks questions about her to find out about her dreams and wishes! Rita sees the changes in Phil!

During the crisis what are you doing to better yourself?

What are some of the things on your someday list?

Do you want to learn a musical instrument?

Do you want to learn a new language? What about writing a blog to honor someone who has helped you?

Isn’t this a perfect time for you to shift gears during these dark days and do something special with this time you have been given?

What books are you reading? How is that new musical instrument coming along?

What are some of the things on your someday list?

What are one or two things you want to do right now to improve your life?

The time to start is now!

What would happen if you viewed these times as your opportunity days?

If you need a virtual speaker contact Madeline at: [email protected]


 “These Are the Bedside Concerts Comforting Virus Patients” (May 8, 2020) by Benjamin Weiser. NewYorkTimes,com. “Dr. Rachel Easterwood, a professionally trained musician-turned-physician, has found a unique way to help her patients with Covid-19 — live classical music concerts.”

“At New York-Presbyterian Allen Hospital in Manhattan, the music of Bach, Brahms and even the Beatles has begun wafting through patient rooms, played by accomplished performers — recently out-of-work chamber music players; winners of international competitions and prizes; teachers at prestigious music schools.” Musicians “perform from California, Kentucky, Maine, Virginia, Massachusetts and New York. The music plays through an iPhone or iPad placed at the bedside of patients who indicated they wanted to hear a performance, using FaceTime’s audio-only feature to protect their privacy.”


“How Music Therapy Can Help Heal the Brain” (June 21, 2018) by Sandhya Raghavan from TheHealthSite.com.  “Music can restore some of the cognitive functions, sensory and motor functions of the brain after a traumatic injury.” Bernice Chu, music therapist at Royal Hospital in London, says, “If the goal in therapy is to regain movement in a patient’s arm, the music therapist may involve a variety of music instruments to target a specific movement. To contrast this, if the goal in therapy is to practice speech and word articulation, the music therapist will use songs and vocal exercises to target this.”


“The Secret of Teaching Science & Math Through Music” by Madeline Frank, Ph.D. is available in book form, and newly updated as an e-book on Kindle, Nook, or iBook 


Barnes and Noble(Nook)




“Musical Notes On Math” by Dr. Madeline Frank teaches your child fractions and decimals, the fun easy way, through the rhythm of music, Winner of the Parent To Parent Adding Wisdom Award is available in book form, newly updated as an e-book on Kindle, Nook, or iBook.


Barnes and Noble(Nook)


Tips on how to use “Musical Notes On Math” 



 Madeline’s Midnight Melodies- Music From around the World”. This CD complements her books with a blend of dance music, gigues, tangos, ballet and favorites including “Danny Boy”, Puccini’s “O Mio Babbino Caro”, Debussy’s “Claire De Lune” and others. “Madeline’s Midnight Melodies” is music to relax by and to move by for music therapy.  “Madeline’s Midnight Melodies” CD is now available for purchase by downloading a song, downloading the album, or by CD by clicking below:

Download Your Copy Today!  Amazon | iTunes | CD Baby

Dr. Madeline Frank’s book “Leadership on a Shoestring Budget” is available through amazon. To order your copy of “Leadership On A Shoestring Budget”  as an e-book on Kindle click on the following link:


Wishing you and your family a Happy Father’s Day from your Non-Invasive Medicine…Music Expert, Madeline

For over 30 years, Dr. Madeline Frank has helped children and adults overcome problems through Classical music. Madeline Frank, Ph.D., DTM is an award-winning teacher, author, researcher, speaker, conductor, and concert artist. She has found a scientific link between studying and/or listening to musical instruments and academic and societal success. Madeline Frank earned her Bachelor and Master’s degree from the Juilliard School of Music. Her education has included scholarships at the Juilliard School, Indiana University, and the University of Cincinnati and she has a violin performance diploma from the North Carolina School of the Arts. (C) 2020 Madeline Frank.