Uolter Gilbert

Picture of Uolter Gilbert

Date of Birth: 03/21/1932

Age: 84

Place of birth: Boston

Citizenship: United States


In 1953 he graduated with honors from him and in the same year married the poet Caelian Stone. They have two children. G. remained at Harvard University to carry out the thesis in physics and in 1954 received a master`s degree. He then moved to England at Cambridge University and worked there as a PhD candidate under the supervision of the Abdus Salam over the output of mathematical formulas that allow to predict the dispersion of elementary particles.

At Cambridge, he met with Mr. James D. Watson and Francis Crick, is engaged in research of sequences open in 1953, the structure of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) - the cellular carrier of genetic information for the synthesis of proteins. Proteins, not only by regenerative cells and the hormones and enzymes involved in this process are composed of amino acids. In accordance with the model Watson - Crick DNA helix consists of structural elements of the chain, called nucleotides, each of which carries one of the four bases - adenine (A), thymine (T), cytosine (C) and guanine (G). Hereditary carrier or genetic code of each amino acid encoded by three bases and is an instruction for the amino compound in the formation of a protein.

After receiving his doctorate in mathematics in 1957 in Cambridge, he returned to Ga rvard, where a year spent post-doctoral research and then another year was a research assistant physicist Julius C. Schwinger. In 1959 he was appointed assistant professor at the Faculty of Physics at Harvard University.

By 1960, James Watson moved to Harvard and resumed friendly relations with G. While Watson was interested in the processes that are associated a certain nucleotide sequence of DNA sintezombelka encoded by the sequence. Protein synthesis, as is known, takes place in the ribosomes - the cell structures in open g. Albert Claude 1949. Scientists have suggested that the genetic information is carried in the ribosomal DNA by using a nucleic acid unstable called messenger RNA (mRNA). In response to a request for Watson to help him identify mRNA G. gladly took up the experimental work, and his life began a long period of research in the field of molecular biology.

In 1964, G. resigned from the Faculty of Physics and became an associate professor of biophysical faculty, where he and his colleague Benno Muller-Hill became interested in the question raised by Francois Jacob and Jacques Monod. In the three years before Jacob and Monod said that genetics is not the question of how genes function, and how this action is prevented, that is, in other words, why the DNA sequence does not permanently produce the encoded proteins . The sequence of bases in DNA is copied (or transcribed) onto the mRNA by the enzyme called RNA polymerase as it moves along the helical DNA molecule. Jacob and Monod suggested that the transcription process can be prevented in the event that the repressor molecule binds to DNA and prevents RNA polymerase DNA move.

Using the bacterium Escherichia coli, and H. Muller-Hill began to investigate this problem. E. coli synthesize a number of proteins that break down the milk sugar - lactose. Protein synthesis is initiated by the so-called lac-operon in the presence of lactose; in its absence inhibits the repressor protein las operon. By 1966 the two researchers have identified a repressor, and over the next four years has defined the structure and location of the operator, its position on the DNA helix to which the repressor is attached.

Currently, it is clear that the nucleotide sequence of the operator DNA region plays a key role in the process at which the repressor binds and recognizes an operator with him. Using methods developed by Frederick Sanger at Cambridge University, and Allan Maxam in 1973 determined the sequence of the lac-operator. Two years later, at the suggestion of the Soviet scientist Andrei visited the Faculty Mirzabekova G. began the study of specific nucleotides in the lac-operator, the most important in the process of binding. Mirzabekov and colleagues investigated the interaction of DNA with dimethyl sulfate in the presence of antibiotics, substances which reduce the strength of interaction of A and T nucleotides. Since methylated DNA splits easily in certain places, the DNA helix was split into fragments of variable, but fixed length.

Applying the method to study Mirzabekova lac-operon, G. Maxam and isolated DNA fragments of appropriate length using gel electrophoresis. With this method, the fragments under the influence of a weak electric current moves in the thin layer gels with different characteristic and for each speed, and being labeled with radioactive isotopes, fragments are left dark streaks on the photographic paper. This method was so effective that G. and Max were able to divide the fragments differ in length by only one base.

By 1977 G. and his colleagues determined the complete nucleotide sequence of the protein under study. Another method of determining the sequence in the meantime been developed Sanger, and both methods have quickly become fundamental in the emerging field of recombinant DNA, ie, genetic engineering. Using its experience, In 1978, he joined the business foundation of the company, "Biogen", one of the first companies specializing in the field of genetic engineering. In 1982, a year after he was elected chairman of the "Biogen" G. leaves Harvard University, in which after the release of the company`s returns at the end of 1984. In Harvard he continued his research on the structure of the gene and the protein synthesis in the recombinant organisms.

Half of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1980 and was awarded the G. Sanger "for his contribution to the definition of base sequences in nucleic acids." The other half of Paul Berg was awarded the prize for a similar study. The work of these three scientists "has brought benefits to mankind, - said in his speech at the presentation of a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Bo G. Maelstrom - not only in the form of new fundamental knowledge, but also in the form of such an important technical solution, as the production of human hormones by bacteria. "

In addition to the Nobel Prize, H. was awarded the Steel Foundation for Molecular Biology of the US National Academy of Sciences (1968), Prize VD Mattia Institute of Molecular Biology. Grove (1976), the prize Luis and Bertha Friedman of the New York Academy of Sciences (1977), Prize Louisa Gross Horwitz Columbia University (1979), the annual premium Gayrdnerskogo Fund (1979), Prize Albert Lasker of Experimental Medicine (1979), premium memory Herbert A. Sauber American society of Biochemistry (1980). He was awarded the honorary title of Chicago, Columbia and the University of Rochester. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the US National Academy of Sciences, the American Society of Biochemistry and the American Physical Society.