The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm, has decided to award the Nobel Prize in chemistry for 2009 jointly to Venkatraman Ramakrishnan, MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Cambridge, United Kingdom, Thomas A. Steitz, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA and Ada E. Yonath, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel 'for studies of the structure and function of the ribosome.'
Venkatraman Ramakrishnan, US citizen. Born in 1952 in Chidambaram, Tamil Nadu, India. Ph.D. in Physics in 1976 from Ohio University, USA. Senior Scientist and Group Leader at Structural Studies Division, MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Cambridge, UK.
Thomas A. Steitz, US citizen. Born in 1940 in Milwaukee, WI, USA. Ph.D. in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry in 1966 from Harvard University, MA, USA. Sterling Professor of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry and Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, both at Yale University, CT, USA.
Ada E. Yonath, Israeli citizen. Born in 1939 in Jerusalem, Israel. Ph.D. in X-ray Crystallography in 1968 from the Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel. Martin S. and Helen Kimmel Professor of Structural Biology and Director of Helen and Milton A. Kimmelman Center for Biomolecular Structure and Assembly, both at Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel.
Last year, the Nobel Prize in chemistry went jointly to Osamu Shimomura, Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL), Woods Hole, MA, USA and Boston University Medical School, MA, USA, Martin Chalfie, Columbia University, New York, NY, USA and Roger Y. Tsien, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA, USA 'for the discovery and development of the green fluorescent protein, GFP.'
The Nobel Prizes are awarded for physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature, peace, and economics. The first five prizes were instituted by the Swedish scientist Alfred Nobel through his will in 1895. With the exception of the peace prize, which is handed out in Oslo, they are all handed out in Stockholm at an annual ceremony on 10 December.