Barbara McClintock was born in Hartford, Connecticut, and studied botany at Cornell University, but completed all the genetic courses she could attend. She pursued her interest in genetics and focused her research on chromosomes.
McClintock narrowed her focus even more to specialize in cytogenetics. Her major discovery involved the manipulation and transposition of genes around chromosomes.
In 1983, McClintock was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine or Physiology for her research and discoveries in genetic transposition.