The 1991 Nobel Prize winners in science were announced last month, and for the first time in 43 years, none of the laureates is from the United States. Yet their work--in nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, phase transitions in materials science, and patch-clamp methodologies--collectively has influenced research in the U.S. and throughout the world. As is typical of Nobel Prize winners, their pioneering advances have changed the way science is done across the spectrum of scientific disciplines.


The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry to Swiss chemist Richard R. Ernst, of the Eidgen”ssische Technische Hochschule (ETH) in Zürich, Switzerland. Ernst's contributions to the development of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy have made the technique nearly indispensable in many of today's scientific laboratories studying a wide range of phenomena, such as the three-dimensional structure of proteins, the chemical interactions of molecules in solution, and the effects...

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