Nobel Prize in Chemistry for 2006 to
Stanford University, CA, USA; born 1947 (59) in St Louis,
MO, USA (US citizen). PhD from Stanford University, CA, USA.
Mrs. George A. Winzer Professor in Medicine at Stanford
University School of Medicine, CA, USA. (pic)
"for his studies of the molecular
basis of eukaryotic transcription".
R. Kornberg was the
first to create an actual picture of how transcription works
at a molecular level in eukaryotes. What Kornberg has done
is to describe how the genetic information is copied from
DNA into messenger-RNA. The messenger-RNA carries the
information out of the cell nucleus so that it can be used
to construct the proteins.
Kornberg's contribution has culminated in his creation of detailed
crystallographic pictures describing the transcription
apparatus in full action in a eukaryotic cell. In his
pictures (all of them created since 2000) one can see the
new RNA-strand gradually developing, as well as the role of
several other molecules necessary for the transcription
process. The pictures are so detailed that separate atoms
can be distinguished and this makes it possible to
understand the mechanisms of transcription and how it is
Science Magagzine - images of RNA polymerase
link to movie
DNA codes for mRNA, 3D animation.
MyDNAi link -
scientific articles (pdf
links to these Science articles):
Cramer, P., Bushnell, D.A. and
Kornberg, R.D. (2001) Structural basis of transcription: RNA
polymerase II at 2.8 ångstrom resolution.
Science 292, 1863-1876.
Gnatt, A.L., Cramer, P., Fu, J., Bushnell, D.A. and Kornberg, R.D.
(2001) Structural basis of transcription: An RNA polymerase II
elongation complex at 3.3 Å resolution. Science 292, 1876-1882.
Bushnell, D.A., Westover, K.D., Davis, R.E. and Kornberg, R.D.
(2004) Structural basis of transcription: An RNA polymerase II –
cocrystal at 4.5 angstroms. Science 303, 983-988.