Late 1950s | Start ‘molecular-biological revolution’ in virology

Thung did attract several young researchers who went on to make groundbreaking discoveries. These included his successor Jan van der Want, but also Jeanne Dijkstra, who carried out research on the Rotterdam-B virus, a tobacco virus, among other things.

Another young researcher attracted by Thung was Ab van Kammen, who studied the molecular workings of viruses. His research led to the discovery that infection of plants with purified tobacco mosaic virus RNA resulted in infection of the plant, in which new complete virus particles emerged. This revealed that RNA could produce proteins on its own.