2021-10-06 12:45:53 Nobel in chemistry honours pair for new way of building molecules | News

Nobel in chemistry honours pair for new way of building molecules | News

Benjamin List and David WC MacMillan were recognized for developing a new type of catalyst to speed up chemical reactions.

Benjamin List of the Max Planck Institute in Germany and David WC MacMillan of Princeton University in Scotland have been awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

The work of the two scientists advanced pharmaceutical research and “made chemistry greener,” the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said in a statement announcing the winners on Wednesday.

List and MacMillan, working independently, had developed asymmetric organocatalysis, a new type of catalyst for accelerating chemical reactions. According to the academy, such catalysts are critical in molecular construction.

“This concept for catalysis is as simple as it is ingenious, and many people have wondered why we didn’t think of it sooner,” said Nobel Committee for Chemistry chair Johan Aqvist.

It is common for a prize to be shared by several scientists working in related fields. Last year, the prize was awarded to Emmanuelle Charpentier of France and Jennifer A Doudna of the United States for developing a gene-editing tool that has revolutionized science by allowing scientists to change DNA.

The prestigious award includes a gold medal and 10 million Swedish kronor (approximately $1.1 million). The prize money was left by the prize’s creator, Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel, who died in 1895.

The Nobel Committee awarded the prize for physiology or medicine to Americans David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian on Monday for their research into how the human body perceives temperature and touch.

The Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded on Tuesday to three scientists: US-Japanese scientist Syukuro Manabe, German Klaus Hasselmann, and Italian Giorgio Parisi for climate models and physical system understanding.

Prizes will also be given out in the coming days for outstanding work in the fields of literature, peace, and economics.

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Nobel in chemistry honours pair for new way of building molecules | News