The double-helix model of
DNA structure was first published in the journal
James Watson and
Francis Crick in 1953,
 (X,Y,Z coordinates in 1954
) based upon the crucial X-ray diffraction image of DNA labeled as "
Photo 51", from
Rosalind Franklin in 1952,
 followed by her more clarified DNA image with
Alexander Stokes, and
 and base-pairing chemical and biochemical information by
 The prior model was
The realization that the structure of DNA is that of a double-helix elucidated the mechanism of
base pairing by which genetic information is stored and copied in living organisms and is widely considered one of the most important scientific discoveries of the 20th century. Crick, Wilkins, and Watson each received one third of the 1962
Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for their contributions to the discovery.
 (Franklin, whose breakthrough X-ray diffraction data was used to formulate the DNA structure, died in 1958, and thus was ineligible to be nominated for a Nobel Prize.)