PERUTZ, MAX FERDINAND (1914–2002), British biochemist and Nobel laureate. Perutz was born in Vienna and went to Cambridge in 1936. In 1947 he became head of a unit of molecular biology, and in 1962 chairman of the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology. In 1937 he started the study of the structure of crystalline proteins by X-ray diffraction. After 30 years this enabled a complete analysis to be made of the positions of all the 2,600 atoms in the myoglobin molecule and the 10,000 atoms in the molecule of hemoglobin, the component of blood which carries oxygen to the body cells. In 1962 Perutz shared the Nobel Prize for chemistry for "research into the structure of globular proteins." Perutz contributed to scientific periodicals, mainly in the above field. He wrote Proteins and Nucleic Acids: Structure and Function (1962). He was elected a fellow of the Royal Society and member of several national academies of science, and was the recipient of other awards.


Le Prix Nobel en 1962 (1963).

[Samuel Aaron Miller]

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