The Nobel Prize in Chemistry
The three scientists who won the Chemistry Nobel this year – Venkataraman Ramakrishnan, Thomas Steitz, and Ada Yonath – had all worked on a component of the cell known as the ribosome. The scientists were able to generate three-dimensional maps of the ribosome’s structure, which helps explain how the ribosome functions at the atomic level. To talk to us about this, we have with us Umesh Varshney, from the department of microbiology and cell biology at the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore.
The Nobel Prize in Physics
The Nobel Prize in Physics this year was split two ways. One part went to Charles Kao, for “groundbreaking achievements concerning the transmission of light in fibers for optical communications”. The second part was shared between Willard Boyle and George Smith for the invention of an imaging semiconductor circuit known as the Charge Coupled Device sensor, or the CCD sensor for short. To discuss the Physics Nobel, we have with us Dr. Ashok Jhunjhunwala, a professor at the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras.
The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine
The Nobel Prize for physiology and medicine was awarded jointly to three scientists for the discovery of, “how chromosomes are protected by telomeres and the enzyme telomerase”.
To tell us exactly what that citation means, we have on the show Dr. Chetan Chitnis, who was in fact taught by one of the Nobel winners this year, Elizabeth Blackburn.
Dr. Chitnis obtained his Ph.D. in Biophysics at the University of California – Berkeley, and he is now a research scientist at the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology.