$2 Million for Crick Medal

Francis Crick’s Nobel Prize medal for the discovery of the structure of DNA sold for 4 times its estimated value.

Apr 12, 2013
Edyta Zielinska

Francis CrickWIKIMEDIA, MARC LIEBERMAN A number of Francis Crick’s possessions were sold at auction this week in New York, including his Nobel Prize medal, which raked in $2.27 million. It was the first time a Nobel Prize medal was had ever been sold at auction, according to LiveScience.

Auctioning began on the medal at $280,000, but within a minute or so, bidding had exceeded the $1 million mark. In the end, the winner was Jack Wang, CEO of a Chinese biomedical firm that’s working on organ regeneration and devices that claim to work by activating electromagnetic fields in the body, according to Nature.

Suprisingly, however, the medal wasn’t the priciest of Crick’s possessions: a letter to his 12-year old son garnering $6 million. Crick’s family says they intend to donate at least 20 percent of the proceeds from the sale to the Francis Crick Institute, which is expected to open in London in 2015. “It’s a win for science,” Kindra Crick, Crick’s granddaughter and an artist living in Portland, Oregon, told Nature. (You can view a number of the auction items on a slideshow at LiveScience.)

Correction (April 12): This story has been updated from its original version to correct Francis Crick's name. The Scientist regrets the error.