Passano Foundation photo 2 Nobel Prize medicine

The Passano Foundation and the Nobel Prize


Selman A. Waksman, Ph.D.,  

Microbiologist, New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station

Winner of the 1952 Nobel prize in Medicine


Dr. Waksman was honored in recognition of his long-continued investigations of the several antagonistic effects of certain soil microorganisms on pathogenic bacteria, culminating in the isolation of streptomycin as a therapeutic antibiotic, followed by its clinical application, thus strengthening the armamentarium of the physician in the struggle against disease.  




Edward Calvin Kendall, Ph.D., D.Sc.,  

Chemist, Mayo Clinic


Philip Showalter Hench, M.D., Sc.D.,  

Physician, Mayo Clinic

Winners of the 1950 Nobel prize in Medicine


Drs. Kendall and Hench received the award for their work on cortisone. Dr. Kendalls work included the isolation of thyroxin, the determination of the constitution of glutathione, and isolation of several physiologically active steroids. Dr. Henchs contributions included the demonstration of the physiologic and pharmacologic actions of certain products of the adrenal cortex and related substances, and their relationships to rheumatoid arthritis and the collagen diseases.  




John Franklin Enders, Ph.D.,  

Associate Professor of Bacteriology,  

Harvard Medical School;  

Childrens Hospital, Boston

Winner of the 1954 Nobel prize in Medicine  


Dr. Enders contribution was the development of relatively simply methods for the isolation and cultivation of polio virus in tissue culture.  These techniques made it possible to isolate virus from the excretions of most patients with poliomyelitis, and to type the virus rapidly.  




Vincent duVigneaud, Ph.D.,

Professor and Chairman of the  

Department of Biochemistry, Cornell  

University Medical College

Winner of the 1955 Nobel prize in Chemistry  


Dr. duVigneaud was chosen for his investigation of the posterior portion of the pituitary gland, which has culminated in the identification and synthesis of oxytocin (used for contracting the uterus) and vasopressin (valuable in the treatment of diabetes insipidus).  




Keith R. Porter, Ph.D.,  

Professor of Biology,  

Harvard University  

George E. Palade, M.D.  

Member and Professor of Cytology,  

The Rockefeller University

Winner of the 1974 Nobel prize in Medicine  


Drs. Porter and Palade shared the Award in recognition of their original work in developing the use of the electron microscope in cytologic research and the subsequent importance of their work in the field of genetics.  The techniques and applications which they developed became extremely valuable to researchers in cytogenetics and cell biology.  




Charles B. Huggins, M.D.,  

Director, Ben May Laboratory for  

Cancer Research, Chicago

Winner of the 1966 Nobel prize in Medicine


The Award was bestowed on Dr. Huggins for his contributions to the knowledge of the role of hormones in the induction and control of cancer.  He discovered the use of female hormones in cancer of the prostate. In addition, he has worked on calcium metabolism, blood enzymes, bone physiology, experimental surgery and cancer research.  




George Herbert Hitchings, Ph.D.,  

Vice-President, in Charge of Research,  

Burroughs Wellcome & Company

Winner of the 1988 Nobel prize in Medicine


Dr. Hitchings showed exemplary leadership in the rational application of the antimetabolite concept, in conjunction with exploration of differences in the enzymatic machinery of host and parasite, to the design of clinically important chemotherapeutic agents for immunosuppression and for therapy of leukemia, gout and malaria.  




Roger W. Sperry, Ph.D.,  

California Institute of Technology,  

Division of Biology  

Winner of the 1981 Nobel prize in Medicine  


Dr. Sperry discovered an unexpected specificity in the recognition of one neuron by another, and he offered new insights into the functions of the surgically disconnected hemispheres, first in animals, then in human patients operated upon for intractable epilepsy. He made fundamental contributions to our understanding of the mind/brain relation and the neurologic bases of human behavior.  




Roger Guillemin, M.D., Ph.D.,  

Professor, The Salk Institute

Winner of the 1977 Nobel prize in Medicine  


Dr. Guillemins pioneering research provided decisive evidence which demonstrated control by the hypothalamus of release of pituitary hormones.  




Michael S. Brown, M.D.,  


Joseph L. Goldstein, M.D.,  

Professors of Medicine, University of  

Texas Southwestern Medical Center

Winners of the 1985 Nobel prize in Medicine


Drs. Brown and Goldsteins insights into the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis resulted in reappraisal of its prevention and treatment.    




Roger D. Kornberg, Ph.D.

Stanford University, CA, USA

Winner of the 2006 Nobel Prize in Chemistry


Dr. Kornberg was honored for his studies of the molecular basis of eukaryotic transcription.  He was the first to create an actual picture of how transcription works at a molecular level in the important group of organisms called eukaryotes (organisms whose cells have a well-defined nucleus). Mammals like ourselves are included in this group, as is ordinary yeast.




J. Michael Bishop, M.D.  


Harold E. Varmus, M.D.,  

Professors of Microbiology,  

University of California School  

of Medicine, San Francisco

Winners of the 1989 Nobel prize in Medicine


Drs. Bishop and Varmus were honored in recognition of their pioneering research on the molecular biology of tumor viruses, and in particular for their key discovery that the cancer-causing genes (oncogenes) of a major class of tumor viruses are present as normal components of the chromosomes of all vertebrates, including man.  



Young Scientist Award  

Thomas R. Cech, Ph.D.,  

Professor of Chemistry,

University of  Colorado, Boulder

Winner of the 1989 Nobel prize in Chemistry


Dr. Cech was recognized for his highly original discovery that nucleic acids (RNA) are capable of catalyzing their own splicing reactions in the absence of conventional enzymes.  




Edwin G. Krebs, M.D.,  

Senior Investigator,  


Edmond H. Fischer, Ph.D.,  

Professor of Biochemistry, University of Washington, School of Medicine

Winners of the 1992 Nobel prize in Medicine


Drs. Krebs and Fischer were honored for their pioneering studies on the role of protein phosphorylation/dephosphorylation cycles in cellular regulation.  




Alfred G. Gilman, M.D., Ph.D.,

Department of Pharmacology,

University of Texas, Dallas

Winner of the 1994 Nobel Prize in Medicine


Dr. Gilman was recognized for his seminal contributions to the understanding of signal transductions.



Roger Y. Tsien, Ph.D.

University of California

San Diego, CA, USA

Winner of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Chemistry


Dr. Tsien was recognized for his work in the discovery and development of the green fluorescent protein, GFP.



Leland H. Hartwell, M.D.

Professor of Genetics

University of Washington

Winner of the 2001 Nobel Prize in Medicine


Dr. Hartwell was selected for his pioneering insights into the life cycle of the cell and its role in the development of cancers. He was the first to identify the molecules that regulate cell division, and developed and proved the concept of cell cycle checkpoints.



Elizabeth H. Blackburn

University of California

San Francisco, CA,


Carol W. Greider

Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

Baltimore, MD


Drs. Blackburn and Greider were awarded the 2009 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for their discovery of how chromosomes are protected by telomeres and the enzyme telomerase.




Andrew Z. Fire, Ph.D.

Stanford University School of Medicine

Stanford, CA, USA

Joint winner of the 2006 Nobel Prize in Medicine


Dr. Fire was honored for his work in the discovery of "RNA interference gene silencing by double-stranded RNA". This is a fundamental mechanism for controlling the flow of genetic information.

Passano Foundation Scientists who have won a Nobel Prize