Kurt Wüthrich

Kurt Wüthrich

2002 Nobel Prize in Chemistry

Prof. Wüthrich began his career at the ETH Zürich, Switzerland. He currently maintains a laboratory at the ETH Zürich, at The Scripps Research Institute, in La Jolla, California and at the iHuman Institute of ShanghaiTech University. In 2002, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry "for his development of nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy for determining the three-dimensional structure of biological macromolecules in solution.".

Education and Work Experience

  • 1964, Ph.D. in chemistry, University of Basel, Switzerland.
  • 1969-Present, ETH Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland: Privatdozent (70),
  • 2004-Present, The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, CA, USA: Cecil
Honors and Awards

    • 1992, Foreign Associate, the United States National Academy of Sciences
    • 1993, Foreign Honorary Member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences
    • 2000, Foreign Associate, Academy of Sciences, Institut de France
    • 2002, Nobel Prize in Chemistry
    • 2010, Foreign Member, The Royal Society, UK (ForMem RS)

Major Academic Achievements

High-resolution three-dimensional structures and molecular dynamics of proteins are the basis for elucidating biological functions of proteins. Wüthrich collaborated with Nobel laureate Richard R. Ernst on developing the first two-dimensional NMR experiments, and established the nuclear Overhauser effect as a convenient way of measuring distances within proteins. Contributions of the Wüthrich group include NMR structure determination of biological macromolecules, the extension of solution NMR studies to very large molecular structures with the principles of transverse relaxation-optimized spectroscopy (TROSY), the introduction of automated projection spectroscopy (APSY) for efficient structure determination of small soluble proteins. Practical applications are primarily focused on prion proteins, opioid receptors, other GPCRs, and higher-order complexes containing protein domains and RNAs in the spliceosome.