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American Scientists Win Nobel Prize In Chemistry 40

SchrodingerZ writes "Two Americans have won the 2012 Nobel prize in Chemistry for their work in cell research. Their work involves the discovery and manipulation of the G-protein-coupled receptors, which detect signals outside the of cells they inhabit. 'The human body has about 1,000 kinds of such receptors, which enable it to respond to a wide variety of chemical signals, like adrenaline. Some receptors are in the nose, tongue and eyes, and let us sense smells, tastes and vision.' The winners are Robert J. Lefkowitz and Brian K. Kobilka. Lefkowitz works at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and is a professor at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina. Kobilka is a professor at Stanford University School of Medicine in California. Their research has helped create newer and more effective drugs with fewer side effects. More on G Protein-coupled Receptor research can be found in the Journal of Biological Chemistry."
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American Scientists Win Nobel Prize In Chemistry

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  • by interkin3tic ( 1469267 ) on Wednesday October 10, 2012 @06:24PM (#41613489)
    There is no category for biology Nobel prize. It's either medicine, physiology, or chemistry for all nobel winners who were biologists.

    I think they should establish one, but there's obviously quite a long tradition to consider there.
  • GPCRs (Score:5, Informative)

    by Hatta ( 162192 ) on Wednesday October 10, 2012 @06:49PM (#41613649) Journal

    Some GPCRs you may know and love include:

    D3 Dopamine receptors - mediate the reinforcing effects of pleasure
    Mu Opioid receptors - mediate pain and the effects of morphine, etc.
    A1 & A2 Adenosine receptors - mediate the effects of caffeine
    CB1 Endocannabinoid receptors - mediate the effects of THC
    5-HT2a Serotonin receptors - mediate the effect of LSD
    NK1r Neurokinin receptor - mediates pain and the effect of capsaicin.
    H1 Histamine receptor - mediates cellular permeability (causing leaky noses) and the effects of benadryl, zyrtec, etc
    H2 Histamine receptor - mediates release of gastric acid and the effects of zantac, etc.

    These things are everywhere and modulate just about everything.

  • by the gnat ( 153162 ) on Wednesday October 10, 2012 @07:00PM (#41613759)

    these two were long past due on earning the Nobel for this work

    Kobilka was hardly "long past due" - he isn't getting the prize for his work with Lefkowitz, he's getting it for the first structure of the beta-adrenergic receptor (and more generally, for figuring out how to make GPCR crystallization feasible), which was only in 2007, and especially for the structure of the GPCR:G-protein complex which was just published last year [nih.gov]. Quite a few people expected that to seal the deal, but this is a relatively quick prize.

Experience varies directly with equipment ruined.