Friday, October 19, 2007

The Nobel Prize

Last week the 2007 Nobel Prize winners were announced. Congratulations to these distinguished scientists. In the 4th edition of Intermediate Physics for Medicine and Biology, Russ Hobbie and I discuss many Nobel Laureates and their research:

1) Felix Bloch and Edward Purcell shared the 1952 Nobel Prize in Physics for their discovery of nuclear magnetic resonance (p. 519).

2) Alan Hodgkin and Andrew Huxley won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1963 for their research on nerve action potentials (p. 154).

3) The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was shared in 1979 by a physicist, Allan Cormack, and an engineer, Godfrey Hounsfield, for the development of computed tomography (p. 455).

4) Erwin Neher and Bert Sakmann received the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1991 for the invention of the patch clamp technique for studying ion channels (p. 238).

5) For his work elucidating the structure of potassium channels (p. 240), Roderick MacKinnon shared the 2003 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Peter Agre.

6) Paul Lauterbur shared with Sir Peter Mansfield the 2003 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for the development of magnetic resonance imaging (p. 527).

Medical and biological physics is truly interdisciplinary: it involves Nobel Prize-winning work in physics, chemistry, and physiology and medicine.

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