In the 1960s Marshall W. Nirenberg deciphered the genetic code, the combination of the A, T, G and C nucleotides that specify amino acids.
The breaking of the genetic code was one of the most important advances in molecular biology, secondary only to the discovery of the double-helical structure of DNA in 1953 by Crick and James D. Watson.
For this achievement, he shared the Nobel Prize with Robert W. Holley and Har Gobind Khorana in 1968.
Nirenberg has racked up 71 publications in neurobiology over the past 20 years. But for all that productivity, those studies will likely never eclipse his cracking of the language of A, T, G and C. That he is not well known for it does not seem to faze him. “Deciphering the genetic code was fantastic fun,” he says. “I mean, it was really thrilling.” Fame may be fleeting, but the genetic code will endure for as long as there is life.
MILF of the Week
Kemo D. (a.k.a. no.7)