New Delhi | Jagran World Desk: The 2021 Nobel Prize in Chemistry has been awarded to Benjamin List and David W.C. MacMillan “for the development of asymmetric organocatalysis.”

Benjamin List and David MacMillan have been awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2021 for their development of a precise new tool for molecular construction: organocatalysis. This has had a great impact on pharmaceutical research, and has made chemistry greener.

The two laureates in the year 2000, independent of each other, developed a third type of catalysis. It is called asymmetric organocatalysis and builds upon small organic molecules.

“This concept for catalysis is as simple as it is ingenious, and the fact is that many people have wondered why we didn’t think of it earlier,” said Johan Åqvist, who is chair of the Nobel Committee for Chemistry.

According to the Nobel Prize website, organic catalysts have a stable framework of carbon atoms, to which more active chemical groups can attach. These often contain common elements such as oxygen, nitrogen, sulphur or phosphorus. This means that these catalysts are both environmentally friendly and cheap to produce.

Using Benjamin List and David MacMillan's contribution researchers can now more efficiently construct anything from new pharmaceuticals to molecules that can capture light in solar cells. In this way, organocatalysts are bringing the greatest benefit to humankind.

Meanwhile, the 2021 Nobel Prize in Physics has been awarded to Syukuro Manabe, Klaus Hasselmann and Giorgio Parisi “for groundbreaking contributions to our understanding of complex physical systems.”

David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian has won the 2021 Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine for their discoveries of receptors for temperature and touch.

Other fields in which the prize will be given in the coming days over a span of a week include the fields of literature and peace and economics. 

Nobel Prize comes with a gold medal and 10 million Swedish kronor (over $1.14 million). The prize money comes from a bequest left by the prize’s creator, Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel, who died in 1895.

Posted By: Sugandha Jha