• By The Financial District

Nobel Chemistry Prize Goes To Duo For Molecule Building

German Benjamin List and Scottish-born David MacMillan won the 2021 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for their development of asymmetric organocatalysis, a "new and ingenious tool for molecule building,” Simon Johnson, Niklas Pollard, and Ludwig Burger reported for Reuters.

Photo Insert: Benjamin List and David MacMillan were awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2021.

"Organic catalysts can be used to drive multitudes of chemical reactions," the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said in a statement.

"Using these reactions, researchers can now more efficiently construct anything from new pharmaceuticals to molecules that can capture light in solar cells." It said these catalysts were both environmentally friendly and cheap to produce, Johan Ahlander and Terje Solsvik reported for Reuters in Oslo.

The more than century-old prize is awarded by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and is worth 10 million Swedish crowns ($1.14 million).

The Nobel prizes, for achievements in science, literature, and peace, were created and funded in the will of Swedish dynamite inventor and businessman Alfred Nobel. They have been awarded since 1901, with the economics prize first handed out in 1969.

Science & technology: Scientist using a microscope in laboratory in the financial district.

The chemistry award is the third of this year's crop of Nobel prizes and follows the prizes for medicine or physiology, and physics, announced earlier this week. Previous winners of the Chemistry prize include Marie Curie and Fredrick Sanger, who won twice.

Seven women have won, including last year's laureates Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer Doudna who were awarded the prize for creating genetic “scissors” that can edit DNA.

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