Ukr.Biochem.J. 2021; Volume 93, Issue 6, Nov-Dec, pp. 139-152


Breaking the genetic code – a new revolutionary stage in the development of molecular biology: 1968 Nobel Prize laureates M. W. Nirenberg, H. G. Khorana, R. W. Holley

O. P. Matyshevska*, V. M. Danilova, S. V. Komisarenko

Palladin Institute of Biochemistry, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Kyiv;

Received: 28 October 2021; Accepted: 12 November 2021

This review presents the life stories of M. Nirenberg, H. Khorana, and R. Holley, winners of the 1968 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, the history of the discoveries made by these scientists, and the methodological approaches used in their works. Owing to the M. Nirenberg and H. Khorana research, the nucleotide compositions of all mRNA triplet codons were decoded. H. Khorana was the first scientist to experimentally prove the direct link between the nucleotide sequence of DNA and the amino acid sequence of the synthesized protein and to obtain a synthetic gene. R. Holley was the first to completely decode the sequence of transport RNA, determine its secondary structure and role in protein synthesis on the ribosome. The Nobel Prize awarded to the scientists was a recognition of their contribution in understanding the mechanisms of coding and reading genetic information and marked a breakthrough moment in the development of molecular biology.

Keywords: , , , , , , , , ,


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