One thing that comes to mind is what a waste of talent here. Series of events lead up to where he is today, but started when he ran out of money for his research related to the GFP gene and cancer.
“Researchers worldwide now use GFP to track development of brain cells, the growth of tumors and the spread of cancer cells. It has let them study nerve cell damage from Alzheimer's disease and see how insulin-producing beta cells arise in the pancreas of a growing embryo, for example.”
We could certainly use someone with his ability and knowledge back in R and D today and perhaps the winners will be generous and offer to share a bit of the good wealth. BD
Twenty years ago, Douglas Prasher was one of the driving forces behind research that earned a Nobel Prize in chemistry this week. But today, he's just driving. Prasher, 57, works as a courtesy shuttle operator at a Huntsville, Ala., Toyota dealership. While his former colleagues will fly to Stockholm in December to accept the Nobel Prize and a $1.4 million check, the former Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution scientist will be earning $10 an hour while trying to put two of his children through college.
In 1961, Osamu Shimomura of the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole discovered the green fluorescent protein that gives the Aequoria Victoria jellyfish its glow. In the 1980s, Prasher began working with the protein, designated as GFP, after hypothesizing the gene responsible for the protein's fluorescent properties could be used to help view formerly invisible molecular functions.
After the American Cancer Society gave Prasher a $220,000 grant in 1988, he set about isolating and copying the GFP gene.
Four years later, as Prasher's grant dried up and he was no longer able to continue his own research, he voluntarily gave samples of the GFP gene to Chalfie.
The cloned gene was also given to Roger Tsien, the third Nobel Prize winner, who has been in the forefront of fluorescent protein research ever since.
CapeCodTimes.com - Shuttle driver reflects on Nobel snub
Read the complete post at http://ducknetweb.blogspot.com/2008/10/nobel-prize-contributor-working-as.html
Oct 14 2008, 03:48 PM
The Medical Quack