Monday, October 02, 2006

Nobel miscellany


Today, Mahatma Gandhi's birthday, is being celebrated with a National holiday in India. In my ideal world, the Nobel Committees would use this day -- not just this year, but every year -- to announce the Peace Prize.

In the event, this day has been used for announcing this year's Nobel in Physiology and Medicine: Andrew Z. Fire of Stanford and Craig C. Mello of UMass Medical School.

While searching for more information, I came across a story with the title The secret talks of the Nobel Committees. It starts with a bang:

This was how the talk went with Nobels medicine committee:

"If we pick telomerase we'll meet the woman quota straight off. We'll have two female winners in one go: Elizabeth Blackburn and Carol Greider."

"Yes, telomerase is fun, it's that enzyme that allows the chromosomes to maintain their length. In the future it might stop cancer and slow down the ageing process altogether, but isnt it a bit early?"

2 Comments:

  1. Anant said...

    Hi Abi,

    In this real world, however, it is easier to get
    the peace prize to first start a war and then to
    stop it. There are many examples, e.g.,
    Kisssinger, Trimble and Hume, Begin and Arafat...

    I guess the other story about the deliberations
    of the committee is a joke. But perhaps that is
    how they do it?

    Anant

  2. pradeepkumar said...

    The prize to Maello and Fire for the discovery of RNA interference may lead to some Nobbel controveresy. Actually RNA interference was first discovered in plants in 1990 by Jorgensen (http://cals.arizona.edu/pls/faculty/jorgensen.html). He used the term post-transcriptional gene silencing (PTGS). The press release of Nobel comittee didnt even mention this. What Mello and Fire did in 1998 was confirming this process in worms. They also coined the termlater on this later.

    A must read article on Nobel Peace Prize by Tariq Ali:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/usa/story/0,12271,855588,00.html