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Fernandus Payne was an American zoologist, geneticist and educator. Panye was born in Shelbyville, Indiana. He received a B.Sc. from Valparaiso University in 1901 and a B.A. from Indiana University in 1905, and a M.A. in 1906. He undertook graduate studies at Columbia University with Thomas Hunt Morgan, his research took place when the use of fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster was being established in Morgan's lab. One of Payne's projects was to breed flies in the dark, if a generation of blind flies was produced then a model of Lamarckism would be confirmed. After producing 69 generation of flies grown in the dark Payne failed to produce a blind fly. Payne also helped Morgan produce X-ray mutagenised flies, these were used for many years to come in Morgans lab. Payne completed his PhD in 1909.
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