Recorded: 16 Jun 2005
Well, I think it is surprising how rapidly things have developed. I mean, at that time, you see, the whole concept of DNA, RNA and proteins was not known, really. Proteins were obviously the important things, the most important components of life, really or living matter—proteins. We had determined the sequence of one protein. So that, I think it was pretty obvious that this one has now got methods for studying proteins. Then we would be able to say much more about living matter and be able to gradually understand what was happening. I think that it was fairly obvious that this was a beginning of understanding living matter. But there were many other developments going on at this time, particularly in understanding the importance of DNA and RNA.
Frederick Sanger, OM, CH, CBE, FRS (born 13 August 1918) is an English biochemist and twice a Nobel laureate in chemistry. In 1958 he was awarded a Nobel prize in chemistry "for his work on the structure of proteins, especially that of insulin". In 1980, Walter Gilbert and Sanger shared half of the chemistry prize "for their contributions concerning the determination of base sequences in nucleic acids". The other half was awarded to Paul Berg "for his fundamental studies of the biochemistry of nucleic acids, with particular regard to recombinant-DNA".
He is the fourth (and only living) person to have been awarded two Nobel Prizes, either wholly or in part.