Americans Robert Lefkowitz and Brian Kobilka are the winners of the 2012 Nobel Prize in chemistry. The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences awarded the chemistry researchers the prize based on their groundbreaking work on G-protein-coupled receptors.
Why should we care? Those protein receptors let the body sense and react to signals from the outside. The human body has about 1,000 kinds of these receptors and a better understanding of them could lead to more high-tech drugs and treatments for diseases.
Lefkowitz, 69, is an investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and professor at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina.
Kobilka, 57, is a professor at Stanford University School of Medicine in California.
To read more about Lefkowitz’s reaction upon hearing of his award, check out this CBS News report.