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Monday, March 26, 2012

Monday's Molecule #163

You blew it last week because you didn't follow instructions. It's not going to get any easier. This week you have to identify the molecule using TWO different common names AND name the Nobel Prize winner most closely associated with this molecule.

Remember, you need THREE answers or you can't win!

Post your answer in the comments. I'll hold off releasing any comments for 24 hours. The first one with the correct answers wins. I will only post correct answers to avoid embarrassment. The winner will be treated to a free lunch.

There could be two winners. If the first correct answer isn't from an undergraduate student then I'll select a second winner from those undergraduates who post the correct answer. You will need to identify yourself as an undergraduate in order to win. (Put "undergraduate" at the bottom of your comment.)

Some past winners are from distant lands so their chances of taking up my offer of a free lunch are slim. (That's why I can afford to do this!)

In order to win you must post your correct name. Anonymous and pseudoanonymous commenters can't win the free lunch.

Winners will have to contact me by email to arrange a lunch date.

Comments are invisible for 24 hours. Comments are now open.

UPDATE: The molecule is Vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin. The Nobel Laureate is Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin. This week's winners are John Runnels and Raul A. Félix de Sousa. Contact me by email to set up a time.

Nov. 2009: Jason Oakley, Alex Ling
Oct. 17: Bill Chaney, Roger Fan
Oct. 24: DK
Oct. 31: Joseph C. Somody
Nov. 7: Jason Oakley
Nov. 15: Thomas Ferraro, Vipulan Vigneswaran
Nov. 21: Vipulan Vigneswaran (honorary mention to Raul A. Félix de Sousa)
Nov. 28: Philip Rodger
Dec. 5: 凌嘉誠 (Alex Ling)
Dec. 12: Bill Chaney
Dec. 19: Joseph C. Somody
Jan. 9: Dima Klenchin
Jan. 23: David Schuller
Jan. 30: Peter Monaghan
Feb. 7: Thomas Ferraro, Charles Motraghi
Feb. 13: Joseph C. Somody
March 5: Albi Celaj
March 12: Bill Chaney, Raul A. Félix de Sousa
March 19: no winner


  1. Vitamin B12, Cobalamin, Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin

  2. Raul A. Félix de SousaMonday, March 26, 2012 5:22:00 PM

    Molecule # 163 is hydroxocobalamin, or Coα-[α-(5,6-dimethylbenzimidazolyl)]-
    Coβ-hydroxocobamide, a variation of Vitamin B12 where cobalt is linked to a hydroxyl group. Dorothy Mary Hodgkin was awarded the 1964 Nobel prize in chemistry for deciphering its intricate structure.

  3. Oo! one I recognized instantly. Probably too late to the party here, but that's hydroxycobalamin aka vitamin B12 as it's originally synthesized in bacteria. I'm going with Dorothy Hodgkin for discovering the structure. My first thought was RB Woodward for his total synthesis, but he'd already gotten his nobel before he and eschenmoser did the B12 synthesis.

  4. The molecule is cobalamin or vitamin B12. More specifically, the structure shown is that of hydroxocobalamin, the form of vitamin B12 synthesized by bacteria.

    Nobel Prize is trickier, but my vote for most closely associated would be Dorothy Hodgkin, Nobel Prize for Chemistry 1964.

  5. Vitamin B12, also known as Cobalamin, structure determined by Dorothy Hodgkin who went on to win a nobel prize in Chemistry.
    Philip Rodger
    Undergraduate student.

  6. oh, and i'm an undergraduate, but i'm in the distant lands category.

  7. This is hydroxocobalamin. I would have just called it "Vitamin B12", but wikipedia says "vitamin B12a" is sometimes used for this form.

    As a synthetic chemist, the Nobel prize winner I associate with this molecule is Robert Woodward, who published the first synthesis of B12 with Albert Eschenmoser (this is after he won the Nobel). But you were probably thinking of Dorothy Hodgkin, whose Prize was directly related to the structural characterisation of Vitamin B12.

    (You could also argue for Whipple, Minot and Murphy, but they didnt know about the actual molecule when they cured pernicious anemia using liver)

    3 answers: hydroxocobalamin, vitamin B12a, Hodgkin.

  8. Cobalamine or Vitamin B12, the noble prize winner is Dorothy Hodgkin

  9. Vitamin B12, cobalamin
    Dorothy Mary Hodgkin (1964 Nobel)

  10. Obert Marín Sánchez
    Undergraduate Peruvian Student
    It is hydroxocobalamin, or vitamer of vitamin B12, the IUPAC name is Coα-[α-(5,6-dimethylbenzimidazolyl)]-
    Coβ-hydroxocobamide. The Nobel Prize winner most closely associated is Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin who elucidated the structure of the molecule by rays X and was awarded with Nobel Prize of Chemistry in 1964.

  11. I believe this is cobalamin, B12, and the Nobelist most associated with it is dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin in 1964. As I am in Austria, if I am right, my wife (who actually recognized the molecule) and I will have a beer and schnitzel to celebrate.

  12. Vitamin B12, cobalamin. Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin elucidated the structure, and won the Nobel -- 1964 if I recall correctly.

    Nigel Atkinson

  13. Vitamin B12, a.k.a. cobalamin

    Dorothy Hodgkin won the Nobel Prize in chemistry (1964) for using X-rays to figure out the structure of important biochemicals including vitamin B12.

    George Whipple, George Minot, William Parry Murphy won the Nobel Prize (1934) for figuring out that a liver extract could successfully treat pernicious anemia.

    I thought the diagram looked familiar, and figured that an organic molecule with cobalt in it should be easy to Google. I was right about the second half.

  14. (Sorry if this is a repeat--I wrote an answer and was not sure if it got sent--multitasking on different screens. Edit this out if you want and delete it entirely if it is a duplicate.)

    Vitamin B12


    Dorthy Crowfoot Hodgkin