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Millions for a Letter

The family of Francis Crick, a co-discoverer of the structure of DNA, put a few of his things, including a letter to his son about the structure of DNA as well as his Nobel Prize itself, up for auction. And they have fetched millions of dollars, Reuters reports.

Indeed Crick's letter to his son sold for $6 million at Christie's , making it the most expensive letter ever sold — beating the prior record of $3.4 million for a letter sent by US President Abraham Lincoln to schoolchildren. Christie's had estimated Crick's letter would sell for between $1 million and $2 million.

Crick's Nobel Prize, which was auctioned by Heritage, went for $2.27 million, four times more than its estimate, Reuters adds. The purchaser was not identified.

The Associated Press adds that half of the proceeds from the sales at Christie's will go to the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, where Crick was a professor, and 20 percent of the Heritage sales will go to the Francis Crick Institute in London, which is scheduled to open in 2015.