Solving the Mystery of the "Cyanide Bomb"

Author: Tyler A Jackson (University of Iowa)

  • Solving the Mystery of the "Cyanide Bomb"


    Solving the Mystery of the "Cyanide Bomb"



A man who's career began as a biochemist and ended as a botanist. A man who under the instruction of a Professor Butt realized what he wanted to do for the rest of his life. This was the story of Professor Jonathan Poulton, Emeritus Faculty at the University of Iowa. He comes from an English family with a religious background and ended up in the sciences when he decided to pursue biochemistry over a dinner with a family friend. He earned his PhD at Oxford University and traveled abroad to conduct research. Poulton eventually landed himself at the University of Iowa on a frigid day but this wasn't enough to deter him! Poulton became a professor of botany and conducted research on how plants stored and released cyanide from their leaves. Later in his career, his research focused on uncovering some of the genes in the Arabidopsis thaliana genome (a small flowering plant). His career was also comprised of several teaching experiences such as but not limited to Principles of Biology and Botany. If you would like to learn more about his outstanding career and unlikely story, read Professor Jonathan Poulton's profile story!

Keywords: Plants, Science Outreach, Poulton, Profile Story, History

How to Cite:

Jackson, T., (2019) “Solving the Mystery of the "Cyanide Bomb"”, Synthesis: A Digital Journal of Student Science Communication 3(1), p.1-5. doi:

Rights: Copyright © 2019 Tyler A Jackson

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Published on
31 Dec 2019
Peer Reviewed