The molecule is the potassium ion channel from rat brain cells. Roderick MacKinnon solved this structure and he got the Nobel Prize in 2003 for his work on the structure and function of the potassiunm ion channel [see Nobel Laureat: Roderick MacKinnon]
The Nobel Laureates for this week are Erwin Neher and Bert Sakmann for working out a technique to measure the voltage changes during ion transport.
The winner is Dima Klenchin of the University of Wisconsin, Madison.
Identify this molecule. Be as specific as possible. Briefly describe what it does
There's a Nobel Prize indirectly connected to this molecule. The prize was for developing a technique that could be used to study the function of molecules like this one.
The first person to identify the molecule and name the Nobel Laureate(s) wins a free lunch. Previous winners are ineligible for six weeks from the time they first won the prize.
There are only five ineligible candidates for this week's reward: Ben Morgan of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Frank Schmidt of the University of Missouri, Joshua Johnson of Victoria University in Australia, Markus-Frederik Bohn of the Lehrstuhl für Biotechnik in Erlangen, Germany, and Jason Oakley a biochemistry student at the University of Toronto.
Frank and Joshua have agreed to donate their free lunch to an undergraduate. Consequently, I have an extra free lunch for a deserving undergraduate so I'm going to award an additional prize to the first undergraduate student who can accept it. Please indicate in your email message whether you are an undergraduate and whether you can make it for lunch. If you can't make it for lunch then please consider donating it to someone who can in the next round.
Send your guess to Sandwalk (sandwalk (at) bioinfo.med.utoronto.ca) and I'll pick the first email message that correctly identifies the molecule(s) and names the Nobel Laureate(s). Note that I'm not going to repeat Nobel Prizes 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.
[Image Credit: Brookhaven National Laboratory]