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This article looks at the highly influential scientific work of François Jacob and Jacques Monod in the context of the Lysenko affair. It argues that Lysenkoism provided a stimulus to understand and interpret the science they were doing in the field of molecular biology in a particular way, leading to a crucial terminological shift from adaptation to induction in 1953. At a time when new geopolitical borders and barriers were being constructed, molecular biology claimed to have identified a rigidly policed border between the genetic material in the cell nucleus and the rest of the cell. Molecular biology was, in this sense, drawn into a form of intellectual Cold War.