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Encyclopedia > Martin Rodbell
Martin Rodbell won a Nobel Prize in 1994
Martin Rodbell won a Nobel Prize in 1994

Martin Rodbell (December 1, 1925- December 7, 1998) was an American biochemist and molecular endocrinologist who is best known for his discovery of G-proteins. He shared the 1994 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Alfred G. Gilman for "their discovery of G-proteins and the role of these proteins in signal transduction in cells." Martin Rodbell, photo published by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, November 1994. ... December 1 is the 335th (in leap years the 336th) day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1925 was a common year starting on Thursday (link will take you to calendar). ... December 7 is the 341st day (342nd on leap years) of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1998 is a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International Year of the Ocean. ... G-proteins, short for guanine nucleotide binding proteins, are a family of proteins involved in second messenger cascades. ... 1994 was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International year of the Family. ... List of Nobel Prize laureates in Physiology or Medicine from 1901 to the present day. ... Alfred Goodman Gilman (b. ...


Research

Reflecting the increasingly common analogies between computer science and biology in the 1960s, Rodbell believed that the fundamental information processing systems of both computers and biological organisms were similar. He asserted that individual cells were analogous to cybernetic systems made up of three distinct molecular components: discriminators, transducers, and amplifiers (otherwise known as effectors). The discriminator, or cell receptor, receives information from outside the cell; a cell transducer processes this information across the cell membrane; and the amplifier intensifies these signals to initiate reactions within the cell or to transmit information to other cells. Edsger Dijkstra said: Computer science is no more about computers than astronomy is about telescopes. ... The tower of a personal computer (specifically a Power Mac G5). ... In biology and ecology, an organism (in Greek organon = instrument) is a living being. ... A transducer is a device that converts one type of energy to another, or responds to a physical parameter. ... An amplifier is a device that uses a small amount of energy to control a larger amount. ... In biochemistry, a receptor is a protein on the cell membrane or within the cytoplasm that binds to a specific factor (a ligand), such as a neurotransmitter, hormone, or other substance, and initiates the cellular response to the ligand. ... In physiology, transduction is the conversion of a stimulus from one form to another. ... Drawing of a cell membrane A component of every biological cell, the selectively permeable cell membrane (or plasma membrane or plasmalemma) is a thin and structured bilayer of phospholipid and protein molecules that envelopes the cell. ...


In December 1969 and early January 1970, Rodbell was working with a laboratory team that studied the effect of the hormone glucagon on a rat liver membrane receptor--the cellular discriminator that receives outside signals. Rodbell discovered that ATP (adenosine triphosphate) could reverse the binding action of glucagon to the cell receptor and thus dissociate the glucagon from the cell altogether. He then noted that traces of GTP (guanosine triphosphate) could reverse the binding process almost one thousand times faster than ATP. Rodbell deduced that GTP was probably the active biological factor in dissociating glucagon from the cell's receptor, and that GTP had been present as an impurity in his earlier experiments with ATP. This GTP, he found, stimulated the activity in the guanine nucleotide protein (later called the G-protein), which, in turn, produced profound metabolic effects in the cell. This activation of the G-protein, Rodbell postulated, was the "second messenger" process that Earl W. Sutherland had theorized. In the language of signal transduction, the G-protein, activated by GTP, was the principal component of the transducer, which was the crucial link between the discriminator and the amplifier. Later, Rodbell postulated, and then provided evidence for, additional G-proteins at the cell receptor that could inhibit and activate transduction, often at the same time. In other words, cellular receptors were sophisticated enough to have several different processes going on simultaneously. Glucagon is a 29 amino acid polypeptide acting as an important hormone in carbohydrate metabolism. ... The liver is an organ in vertebrates including humans. ... Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is the nucleotide known in biochemistry as the molecular currency of intracellular energy transfer; that is, ATP is able to store and transport chemical energy within cells. ... Guanosine triphosphate (GTP) is also known as guanosine-5-triphosphate, G3P, and 9-ß-D-ribofuranosylguanine-5-triphosphate. ... In biology, second messengers are low-weight diffusible molecules that are used in signal transduction to relay a signal within a cell. ... Earl Wilbur Sutherland Jr. ...


Biography

Rodbell was born in Baltimore, Maryland. He entered Johns Hopkins University in 1943, with interests in biology and French existential literature. In 1944, his studies were interrupted by his military service as a U.S. Navy radio operator during World War II. He returned to Hopkins in 1946 and received his B.S. in biology in 1949. In 1950, he married Barbara Ledermann, a former friend of the legendary diarist Anne Frank, with whom he had four children. Rodbell received his Ph.D. in biochemistry at the University of Washington in 1954. He did post-doctoral work at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign from 1954 to 1956. In 1956, Rodbell accepted a position as a research biochemist at the National Heart Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health, in Bethesda, Maryland. In 1985, Rodbell became Scientific Director of the NIH's National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences in Chapel Hill, North Carolina where he worked until his retirement in 1994. He died in Chapel Hill of multiple organ failure after an extended illness. City nickname: Charm City Location in the state of Maryland Founded 30 July 1729 County Independent city Mayor Martin OMalley (Dem) Area  - Total  - Water 349. ... The Johns Hopkins University is an internationally prestigious private institution of higher learning located in Baltimore, Maryland. ... Main article: Life There are many universal units and common processes that are fundamental to the known forms of life. ... Existentialism is a philosophical movement that views the individual, the self, the individuals experience, and the uniqueness therein as the basis for understanding the nature of human existence. ... The United States Navy (USN) is the branch of the United States armed forces responsible for naval operations. ... Mushroom cloud from the nuclear explosion over Nagasaki rising 18 km into the air. ... Cover of the diarys Definitive Edition, 1995. ... Biochemistry is the chemistry of life. ... The University of Washington, founded in 1861, is a major public research university in the Seattle metropolitan area. ... University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign   The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, also known as UIUC and the U of I (the officially preferred abbreviation), is the largest campus in the University of Illinois system. ... The National Institutes of Health is an institution of the United States government which focuses on medical research. ... Panoramic view of downtown Bethesda Bethesda is an urbanized, but unincorporated area in Montgomery County, Maryland, near Washington, DC. It takes its name from a church once located there, the Bethesda Presbyterian Church (built 1820), which in turn was named from a passage in the Christian New Testament. ... Chapel Hill is a town located in North Carolina. ...


This article contains text from the website of the NIH, part of the U.S. Government, and thus under public domain


External links

  • Nobel Prize Biography (http://nobelprize.org/medicine/laureates/1994/rodbell-autobio.html)
  • NIH Profiles in Science (http://profiles.nlm.nih.gov/GG/)

  Results from FactBites:
 
Martin Rodbell (760 words)
Martin Rodbell was born on December 1, 1925, in Baltimore, Maryland.
Rodbell discovered that ATP (adenosine triphosphate) could reverse the binding action of glucagon to the cell receptor and thus dissociate the glucagon from the cell altogether.
Rodbell deduced that GTP was probably the active biological factor in dissociating glucagon from the cell's receptor, and that GTP had been present as an impurity in his earlier experiments with ATP.
Martin Rodbell - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (616 words)
In December 1969 and early January 1970, Rodbell was working with a laboratory team that studied the effect of the hormone glucagon on a rat liver membrane receptor--the cellular discriminator that receives outside signals.
Rodbell discovered that ATP (adenosine triphosphate) could reverse the binding action of glucagon to the cell receptor and thus dissociate the glucagon from the cell altogether.
Rodbell deduced that GTP was probably the active biological factor in dissociating glucagon from the cell's receptor, and that GTP had been present as an impurity in his earlier experiments with ATP.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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