25 Questions That Will Test Your Science Knowledge

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Science Knowledge Quizzes & Trivia

This is a fun, short on-line test of your science knowledge of analytical chemistry, life science, historical timelines, and much more!

Take the quiz and find out how much you know!Brought to you by American Laboratory® and American Biotechnology Laboratory®.


Questions and Answers
  • 1. 

    Who was the first person convicted of murder in 1988 based on with DNA fingerprinting evidence, which led to growth of forensic science?

    • A.

      Richard Buckland

    • B.

      Dave Werrett

    • C.

      Colin Pitchfork

    • D.

      Peter Gill

    Correct Answer
    C. Colin Pitchfork
    Explanation
    Colin Pitchfork (born 1961, Bristol, England) was the first criminal convicted for murder based on DNA fingerprinting evidence and the first to be caught as a result of mass screening. Pitchfork raped and murdered two girls in Narborough, on November 21, 1983, and on July 31, 1986. He was arrested on September 19, 1987, and sentenced to life imprisonment on January 22, 1988 after admitting both murders.

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  • 2. 

    Who invented the electron capture detector for gas chromatography (GC)?

    • A.

      J. J. Van Deemter

    • B.

      James E. Lovelock

    • C.

      Keene P. Dimick

    • D.

      Mikhail S. Tsvet

    Correct Answer
    B. James E. Lovelock
    Explanation
    An electron capture detector (ECD) is a device for detecting atoms and molecules in a gas through the attachment of

    electrons via electron capture ionization. The device was invented in 1957 by Dr. James E. Lovelock and is used in gas

    chromatography to detect trace amounts of chemical compounds in a sample.

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  • 3. 

    In 2006, Andrew Z. Fire and Craig C. Mello received the Nobel Prize for which of the following discoveries?

    • A.

      Studies on the molecular basis of eukaryotic transcription

    • B.

      Role of RNA interference in the silencing of gene expression

    • C.

      Principles for introducing specific gene modifications in mice by the use of embryonic stem cells

    • D.

      Discovery of the bacterium Helicobacter pylori and its role in gastritis and peptic ulcer disease

    Correct Answer
    B. Role of RNA interference in the silencing of gene expression
    Explanation
    Andrew Zachary Fire was awarded the 2006 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine, along with Craig C. Mello, for the discovery of RNA interference (RNAi). This research was conducted at the Carnegie Institution of Washington and published in 1998.

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  • 4. 

    Who is credited with discovering the most elements as discoverer or co-discoverer?

    • A.

      Francis W. Aston

    • B.

      William Ramsay

    • C.

      Ernest Rutherford

    • D.

      Glenn T. Seaborg

    Correct Answer
    D. Glenn T. Seaborg
    Explanation
    Glenn Theodore Seaborg was an American scientist who won the 1951 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for "discoveries in the chemistry of the transuranium elements," contributed to the discovery and isolation of ten elements, developed the actinoids concept and was the first to propose the actinoids series which led to the current arrangement of the Periodic Table of the Elements.

    Seaborg was the principal or co-discoverer of ten elements: plutonium, americium, curium, berkelium, californium, einsteinium, fermium, mendelevium, nobelium and element 106, which was named seaborgium in his honor while he was still living. He also developed more than 100 atomic isotopes, and is credited with important contributions to the separation of the isotope of uranium used in the atomic bomb at Hiroshima.

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  • 5. 

    Which American scientist entered graduate school intending to study ecology, but soon switched his focus to genetics and cytology and later on won a Nobel Prize for discovering the role of genes in regulating biochemical events in cells.

    • A.

      Franklin D. Keim

    • B.

      George W. Beadle

    • C.

      Rollins A. Emerson

    • D.

      Barbara McClintock

    Correct Answer
    B. George W. Beadle
    Explanation
    George Wells Beadle was an American scientist in the field of genetics, and Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine Nobel laureate who with Edward Lawrie Tatum discovered the role of genes in regulating biochemical events within cells.

    Beadle and Tatum's key experiments involved exposing the bread mold Neurospora crassa to x-rays, causing mutations. In a series of experiments, they showed that these mutations caused changes in specific enzymes involved in metabolic pathways. These experiments led them to propose a direct link between genes and enzymatic reactions, known as the "one gene, one enzyme" hypothesis.

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  • 6. 

    Who shared the 19 Nobel Prize with James D. Watson and Francis H. C. Crick in 1962?

    • A.

      Edward Neville da Costa Andrade

    • B.

      Rosalind E. Franklin

    • C.

      Max F. Perutz

    • D.

      Maurice H. F. Wilkins

    Correct Answer
    D. Maurice H. F. Wilkins
    Explanation
    Maurice H. F. Wilkins, a Nobel Prize-winning scientist who contributed to the discovery of the structure of DNA by Dr. James D. Watson and Dr. Francis H. C. Crick. Dr. Wilkins was one of a group of wartime physicists, including Dr. Crick, who decided to pursue careers in biology after World War II. Dr. Wilkins chose as his problem the physical structure of DNA, the hereditary material, which he proposed to unravel by X-ray crystallography, then a young technique.

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  • 7. 

    Which of the following was the first complete DNA genome to be sequenced in 1975?

    • A.

      Bacteriophage Φ6

    • B.

      Bacteriophage φX174

    • C.

      Bacteriophage λ

    • D.

      Bacteriophage Φ29

    Correct Answer
    B. Bacteriophage φX174
    Explanation
    Bacteriophage φX174 was the first DNA-based genome to be sequenced. This work was completed by Fred Sanger and his team in 1977.

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  • 8. 

    Who was the youngest scientist to receive a Noble Prize?

    • A.

      Werner K. Heisenberg

    • B.

      William Laurence Bragg

    • C.

      James D. Watson

    • D.

      John B. Fenn

    Correct Answer
    B. William Laurence Bragg
    Explanation
    William Lawrence Bragg was an English physicist who shared the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1915 with his father Sir

    William Henry Bragg. At 25, William Lawrence Bragg is the youngest person ever to receive a Nobel Prize.

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  • 9. 

    Which American Biologist was awarded the Lemelson-MIT Prize in 2003 for inventing for instruments that have unlocked much the mystery of human biology?

    • A.

      Nick Holonyak, Jr.

    • B.

      Leroy Hood

    • C.

      Dean Kamen

    • D.

      Raymond Kurzweil

    Correct Answer
    B. Leroy Hood
    Explanation
    Leroy Hood is an American biologist. He won the 2003 Lemelson-MIT Prize for inventing "four instruments that have unlocked much of the mystery of human biology" by helping decode the genome. Hood also won the 2002 Kyoto Prize for Advanced Technology, and the 1987 Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research. His inventions include the automated DNA sequencer and an automated tool for synthesizing DNA. Hood co-founded the Institute for Systems Biology.

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  • 10. 

    In which year was the National Science Foundation (NSF) created?

    • A.

      1938

    • B.

      1944

    • C.

      1947

    • D.

      1950

    Correct Answer
    D. 1950
    Explanation
    Formed May 10, 1950, the National Science Foundation (NSF) is a United States government agency that supports fundamental research and education in all the non-medical fields of science and engineering. Its medical counterpart is the National Institutes of Health. With an annual budget of about $6.02 billion (fiscal year 2008), NSF funds approximately 20 percent of all federally supported basic research conducted by the United States' colleges and universities. In some fields, such as mathematics, computer science, economics and the social sciences, NSF is the major source of federal backing.

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  • 11. 

    What year was the human genome sequenced?

    • A.

      1975

    • B.

      1995

    • C.

      2003

    • D.

      2006

    Correct Answer
    C. 2003
    Explanation
    Completed in 2003, the Human Genome Project (HGP) was a 13-year project coordinated by the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Institutes of Health. During the early years of the HGP, the Wellcome Trust (U.K.) became a major partner; additional contributions came from Japan, France, Germany, China, and others.

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  • 12. 

    Which famous chemist lost his head for collecting taxes?

    • A.

      Joseph L. Gay-Lussac

    • B.

      Antoine-Laurent de Lavoisier

    • C.

      Stanislao Cannizarro

    • D.

      Jőns J. Berzelius

    Correct Answer
    B. Antoine-Laurent de Lavoisier
    Explanation
    Antoine-Laurent de Lavoisier, the father of modern chemistry, was a French noble prominent in the histories of chemistry and biology. He stated the first version of the law of conservation of mass, recognized and named oxygen (1778) and hydrogen (1783), abolished the phlogiston theory, helped construct the metric system, wrote the first extensive list of elements, and helped to reform chemical nomenclature.

    As one of twenty-eight French tax collectors and a powerful figure in the unpopular Ferme Générale, Lavoisier was branded a traitor during the Reign of Terror by French Revolutionists in 1794. Lavoisier had also intervened on behalf of a number of foreign-born scientists including mathematician Joseph Louis Lagrange, granting them exception to a mandate stripping all foreigners of possessions and freedom. Lavoisier was tried, convicted, and guillotined on 8 May in Paris, at the age of 50.

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  • 13. 

    Gregor Johann Mendel is known for his genetic research in tracing the inheritance patterns of certain traits.  The importance of Mendel's work did not gain wide understanding until the 1890s, after his death, when other scientists working on similar problems rediscovered his research.  Which of the following proponents of Mendel's work coined the word genetics in 1905?

    • A.

      Alfred Sturtevant

    • B.

      Colin McLeod

    • C.

      William Bateson

    • D.

      Frederick Griffith

    Correct Answer
    C. William Bateson
    Explanation
    William Bateson was a British geneticist, a Fellow of St. John's College, Cambridge, where he eventually became Master. He was the first person to use the term genetics to describe the study of heredity and biological inheritance, and the chief populariser of the ideas of Gregor Mendel following their rediscovery in 1900 by Hugo de Vries and Carl Correns.

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  • 14. 

    Who is the only Nobel Laureate to receive two prizes, one for physics and one for chemistry?

    • A.

      Frederick Sanger

    • B.

      John Bardeen

    • C.

      Linus Pauling

    • D.

      Marie Curie

    Correct Answer
    D. Marie Curie
    Explanation
    Marie Skłodowska Curie was a physicist and chemist of Polish upbringing and, subsequently, French citizenship. She was a pioneer in the field of radioactivity, the first person honored with two Nobel Prizes, and the first female professor at the University of Paris.

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  • 15. 

    What was the first genetically engineered organism?

    • A.

      Corn

    • B.

      Tobacco

    • C.

      Sheep

    • D.

      Rat

    Correct Answer
    B. Tobacco
    Explanation
    In 1983, the first genetically engineered organism, a tobacco plant designed to be resistant to certain herbicides, was grown in Wisconson.

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  • 16. 

    Which company built the first commercial mass spectrometer?

    • A.

      AEI (Associated Electrical Industries)

    • B.

      CEC (Consolidated Electrodynamics Corp.)

    • C.

      Metropolitan Vickers

    • D.

      Kratos

    Correct Answer
    B. CEC (Consolidated Electrodynamics Corp.)
    Explanation
    The first commercial mass spectrometer (patent 2341551) was developed by Consolidated Engineering Corporation. The CEC was a chemical instrument manufacturer from 1937 to 1960 when it became a subsidiary of Bell and Howell Corp.

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  • 17. 

    James Watson and Francis Crick won the Nobel Prize for discovering the structure of DNA, but there was a catch.  These men discovered the structure of DNA based upon experiments performed by this person?

    • A.

      Alfred Hershey

    • B.

      Raymond Gosling

    • C.

      Maurice H. F. Wilkins

    • D.

      Rosalind Franklin

    Correct Answer
    D. Rosalind Franklin
    Explanation
    Rosalind Elsie Franklin was an English biophysicist and X-ray crystallographer who made important contributions to the understanding of the fine molecular structures of DNA, RNA, viruses, coal and graphite. Franklin is still best known for her work on the X-ray diffraction images of DNA. Her data, according to Francis Crick, were “the data we actually used” to formulate Crick and Watson's 1953 hypothesis regarding the structure of DNA. Furthermore, unpublished drafts of her papers (written as she was arranging to leave the unsupportive research situation at King's College London) show that she had indeed determined the overall B-form of the DNA helix. However, her work was published third, in the series of three DNA Nature articles, led by the paper of Watson and Crick which only vaguely acknowledged her evidence in support of their hypothesis.

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  • 18. 

    Which is the largest chemical company in the world based on revenue?

    • A.

      BASF (Germany)

    • B.

      The Dow Chemical Company (U.S.)

    • C.

      INEOS (UK)

    • D.

      DuPont (US)

    Correct Answer
    A. BASF (Germany)
    Explanation
    BASF SE (FWB: BAS, LSE: BFA) is a German chemical company and the largest chemical company in the world. BASF originally stood for Badische Anilin- und Soda-Fabrik (Baden Aniline and Soda Factory). Today, the four letters are a registered trademark and the company is listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange, London Stock Exchange, and Zurich Stock Exchange. The company delisted its ADR from the New York Stock Exchange in September 2007.

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  • 19. 

    What is the most common element in the human body?

    • A.

      Oxygen

    • B.

      Carbon

    • C.

      Hydrogen

    • D.

      Calcium

    Correct Answer
    A. Oxygen
    Explanation
    Oxygen is the most common element in the human body, making up almost 63% of the average human.

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  • 20. 

    In which year was the Pittsburgh Conference (PITTCON) launched?

    • A.

      1946

    • B.

      1948

    • C.

      1950

    • D.

      1955

    Correct Answer
    C. 1950
    Explanation
    Since 1950, Pittcon is the world’s annual premier Conference and Exposition on laboratory science. It is organized by The Pittsburgh Conference on Analytical Chemistry and Applied Spectroscopy, a Pennsylvania not-for-profit educational corporation which is comprised of the Spectroscopy Society of Pittsburgh (SSP) and the Society for Analytical Chemists of Pittsburgh (SACP).

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  • 21. 

    Where in the cell are proteins produced?

    • A.

      Golgi apparatus

    • B.

      Endoplasmic reticulum

    • C.

      Peroxisome

    • D.

      Ribosomes

    Correct Answer
    D. Ribosomes
    Explanation
    The ribosome functions in the expression of the genetic code from nucleic acid into protein, in a process called translation. Ribosomes do this by catalyzing the assembly of individual amino acids into polypeptide chains; this involves binding a messenger RNA and then using this as a template to join together the correct sequence of amino acids. This reaction uses adapters called transfer RNA molecules, which read the sequence of the messenger RNA and are attached to the amino acids.

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  • 22. 

    Above which of the following temperatures do ethanol and gasoline (dodecane) become completely miscible in all proportions?

    • A.

      -3 C

    • B.

      42 C

    • C.

      25 C

    • D.

      13 C

    Correct Answer
    D. 13 C
    Explanation
    A temperature of 13 C is required in order for ethanol and gasoline to become completely miscible in all proportions.

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  • 23. 

    What is the name of the overall reaction in living things that turns sugar and oxygen into carbon dioxide, energy and water?

    • A.

      Glycolysis

    • B.

      Respiration

    • C.

      Gluconeogenesis

    • D.

      Oxidative Phosphorylation

    Correct Answer
    B. Respiration
    Explanation
    Cellular respiration is the set of the metabolic reactions and processes that take place in organisms' cells to convert biochemical energy from nutrients into adenosine triphosphate (ATP), and then release waste products. The reactions involved in respiration are catabolic reactions that involve the oxidation of one molecule and the reduction of another.

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  • 24. 

    Which laboratory instrument manufacturer was first to employ a microprocessor in one of its instruments in 1974?

    • A.

      Perkin Elmer

    • B.

      Varian

    • C.

      Hewlett-Packard

    • D.

      Spectra Physics

    Correct Answer
    C. Hewlett-Packard
    Explanation
    In 1974, Hewlett-Packard introduced the first handheld programmable scientific electronic calculator.

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  • Mar 18, 2023
    Quiz Edited by
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  • May 22, 2009
    Quiz Created by
    Iscpubs
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