Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Second Nobel for Gene Expression   posted by the @ 10/04/2006 11:25:00 PM
The Nobel Prize in Chemistry goes to Roger D. Kornberg "for his studies of the molecular basis of eukaryotic transcription".

First, something entertaining: on The NewsHour, when asked to speculate about why Kornberg is a second generation Nobel-winner, the answer given by the senior Kornberg was "genes", and this was echoed by the Junior Kornberg as being at least one explanation.

Second, something maddening: Fire, Mello and Kornberg were all constantly asked by reporters how/whether their discoveries would lead to new medicine, yet each was awared for work at the most basic level of science. Thus asking them about medicine is a little like asking the physics winners if their discoveries would lead to starships. (In that the obvious answer is that it no doubt will contribute, and that the specifics are generally too complex or unclear to communicate to a general audience in a sound bite.)