Monday, May 26, 2008

Monday's Molecule #73

 
Today's molecule is rather large but it's made up of only two different macromolecules. It has been a favorite molecule of many famous scientists. Several fundamental advances in our understanding of biochemistry and molecular biology have come from studies of this molecules and its components.

You need to identify the molecule and give its correct common name. We don't need the formal IUPAC name in this case, because there isn't one!. Pay attention to the correct common name—you may not be able to guess it just by looking at the molecule but you should be able to deduce it knowing that it is connected to a Nobel Prize.

There's an direct connection between today's molecule and a Nobel Prize. The prize was awarded for purifying the molecule and determining its composition. The first person to correctly identify the molecule and name the Nobel Laureate(s) wins a free lunch at the Faculty Club. Previous winners are ineligible for one month from the time they first collected the prize. There are four ineligible candidates for this week's reward.

THEME:

Nobel Laureates
Send your guess to Sandwalk (sandwalk (at) bioinfo.med.utoronto.ca) and I'll pick the first email message that correctly identifies the molecule and names the Nobel Laureate(s). Note that I'm not going to repeat Nobel Laureate(s) so you might want to check the list of previous Sandwalk postings by clicking on the link in the theme box.

Correct responses will be posted tomorrow. I may select multiple winners if several people get it right.

Comments will be blocked for 24 hours. Comments are now open.

UPDATE: The molecule is tobacco mosaic virus (TMV). The Noble Laureate is Wendell Meredith Stanley (Chemistry 1946). There were quite a few readers who got it right but the first one was John Dennehy of CUNY New York (USA). Congratulations John! He has already declined my offer of lunch on Thursday and taken a rain check to be cashed the next time he's in Toronto.


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