Robert Bruce Merrifield


Robert Bruce Merrifield

Infobox Scientist
name = Robert Bruce Merrifield
box_width =


image_width =150px
caption = Robert Bruce Merrifield
birth_date = July 15 1921
birth_place = Fort Worth, Texas
death_date = May 14 2006
death_place = Cresskill, New Jersey
residence =
citizenship =
nationality = United States
ethnicity =
field = biochemistry
work_institutions =
alma_mater =
doctoral_advisor =
doctoral_students =
known_for = solid phase peptide synthesis
author_abbrev_bot =
author_abbrev_zoo =
influences =
influenced =
prizes = Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1984
religion =
footnotes =

Robert Bruce Merrifield (July 15 1921May 14 2006) was an American biochemist who won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1984 for the invention of solid phase peptide synthesis. [cite news |title=R. Bruce Merrifield, Who Won Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Dies at 84 |author=Kenneth Chang |publisher="The New York Times" |date=2006-05-06 |url=http://www.nytimes.com/2006/05/20/nyregion/20merrifield.html |accessdate=2008-04-12]

Early life

He was born in Fort Worth, Texas, on 15 July, 1921, the only son of George E. Merrifield and Lorene née Lucas. In 1923 the family moved to California where he attended nine grade schools and two high schools before graduating from Montebello High School in 1939. It was there that he developed an interest both in chemistry and in astronomy.

After two years at Pasadena Junior College he transferred to the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA). After graduation in chemistry he worked for a year at the Philip R. Park Research Foundation taking care of an animal colony and assisting with growth experiments on synthetic amino acid diets. One of these was the experiment by Geiger that first demonstrated that the essential amino acids must be present simultaneously for growth to occur.

He returned to graduate school at the UCLA chemistry department with professor of biochemistry M.S. Dunn to develop microbiological methods for the quantitation of the pyrimidines. The day after graduating on 19 June, 1949, he married Elizabeth Furlong and the next day left for New York City and the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research.

Career

At the Institute, later Rockefeller University, he worked as an Assistant for Dr. D.W. Woolley on a dinucleotide growth factor he discovered in graduate school and on peptide growth factors that Woolley had discovered earlier. These studies led to the need for peptide synthesis and, eventually, to the idea for solid phase peptide synthesis in 1959. In 1963, he was sole author of a classic paper in the Journal of the American Chemical Society in which he reported a method he called solid phase peptide synthesis, which is the fifth most cited paper in the journal's history. [cite journal| title= Solid Phase Peptide Synthesis. I. The Synthesis of a Tetrapeptide| author= R. B. Merrifield| journal= Journal of the American Chemical Society| year=1963| volume=85| pages=2149|doi=10.1021/ja00897a025 ]

In the mid-60s Dr. Merrifield's laboratory first synthesized bradykinin, angiotensin, desamino-oxytocin and insulin. In 1969, he and his colleague Bernd Gutte announced the first synthesis of the enzyme, ribonuclease A. This work proved the chemical nature of enzymes.

Dr. Merrifield's method greatly stimulated progress in biochemistry, pharmacology and medicine, making possible the systematic exploration of the structural bases of the activities of enzymes, hormones and antibodies. The development and applications of the technique continued to occupy his laboratory, where he remained active at the bench until recently. In 1993, he published his autobiography, "Life during a Golden Age of Peptide Chemistry." He received the Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities Award for outstanding contributions to Biomolecular Technologies in 1998.

Personal life

After raising their six children, James, Nancy, Betsy, Cathy, Laurie and Sally, his wife Elizabeth (Libby), a biologist by training, joined the Merrifield laboratory at Rockefeller University where she worked for over 23 years.

After a long illness R. Bruce Merrifield died on May 14, 2006 at the age of 84 in his home in Cresskill, New Jersey. [Petkewich, Rachel. [http://pubs.acs.org/cen/news/84/i22/8422merrifield.html "Nobel Laureate R. Bruce Merrifield Dies At 84"] , "Chemical & Engineering News", May 23, 2006. Accessed May 9, 2007. "Robert Bruce Merrifield, a biochemist who won the 1984 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for a method he named solid-phase peptide synthesis, died on May 14 at his home in Cresskill, N.J., after a long illness. He was 84."] He is survived by his wife, children and 16 grandchildren.

References

*Citation
id = PMID:17516587
url= http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17516587
last=Jones
first=John H
publication-date=2007 Jun
year=2007
title=R.B. Merrifield: European footnotes to his life and work
volume=13
issue=6
periodical=J. Pept. Sci.
pages=363–7
doi = 10.1002/psc.857
journal=Journal of Peptide Science

*Citation
id = PMID:16850497
url= http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16850497
last=Gierasch
first=Lila M
publication-date=2006
year=2006
title=Editorial: Passing of a gentle giant of peptide science: in memoriam, R. Bruce Merrifield
volume=84
issue=5
periodical=Biopolymers
pages=433–4
doi = 10.1002/bip.20574
journal=Biopolymers

*Citation
id = PMID:16825560
url= http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16825560
last=Lerner
first=Richard A
publication-date=2006 Jul 7
year=2006
title=Retrospective. R. Bruce Merrifield (1921-2006)
volume=313
issue=5783
periodical=Science
pages=57
doi = 10.1126/science.1130957
journal=Science
pmid=16825560

*Citation
id = PMID:3883428
url= http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3883428
last=Sano
first=S
publication-date=1985 Jan
year=1985
title= [Work of Dr. Robert Merrifield, with special reference to the development of solid phase peptide synthesis]
volume=30
issue=1
periodical=Tanpakushitsu Kakusan Koso
pages=51–3

*Citation
id = PMID:6389076
url= http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6389076
last=Domagk
first=G F
publication-date=1984 Dec 7
year=1984
title= [The 1984 Nobel prize for chemistry. Synthetic hormones and enzymes with Merrifield's peptide synthesizer]
volume=109
issue=49
periodical=Dtsch. Med. Wochenschr.
pages=1901–2

External links

* [http://nobelprize.org/chemistry/laureates/1984/merrifield-bio.html Nobel Prize biography of Bruce Merrifield]


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  • Robert Bruce Merrifield — Robert Bruce Merrifield, genannt Bruce Merrifield, (* 15. Juli 1921 in Fort Worth, Texas; † 14. Mai 2006 in Cresskill, New Jersey), war ein US amerikanischer Chemiker, der 1984 den Nobelpreis in Chemie erhielt. Er wurde als einziger Sohn von… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Robert Bruce Merrifield — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Archivo:Robert B. Merrifield.jpg Robert Bruce Merrifield Robert Bruce Merrifield (Fort Worth, EUA 1921 Cresskill 2006) fue un bioquímico y profesor universitario estadounidense galardonado con el Premio Nobel de… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Robert Bruce Merrifield — (15 juillet 1921 à Fort Worth, Texas, États Unis 14 mai 2006 à Cresskill, New Jersey, États Unis) était un chimiste américain. Il obtint le prix Nobel de chimie de 1984[1]. Sommaire 1 Biographie …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Chemienobelpreis 1984: Robert Bruce Merrifield —   Der amerikanische Wissenschaftler erhielt den Nobelpreis für seine einfache und geniale Methode zur Herstellung von Peptiden und Proteinen.    Biografie   Robert Bruce Merrifield, * Fort Worth (Texas) 15.7.1921; Chemiestudium an der University… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Robert B. Merrifield — Robert Bruce Merrifield Robert Bruce Merrifield Robert Bruce Merrifield (né le 15 juillet 1921 à Fort Worth au Texas ; mort le 14 mai 2006 à Cresskill dans le New Jersey), était un chimiste américain. En 1984, il obtint le prix Nobel de… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Bruce Merrifield — Robert Bruce Merrifield Robert Bruce Merrifield Robert Bruce Merrifield (né le 15 juillet 1921 à Fort Worth au Texas ; mort le 14 mai 2006 à Cresskill dans le New Jersey), était un chimiste américain. En 1984, il obtint le prix Nobel de… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Merrifield , Robert Bruce — (1921–) American biochemist Born in Fort Worth, Texas, Merrifield was educated at the University of California, Los Angeles, where he received his PhD in 1949. He began work immediately at Rockefeller University, New York, and was appointed to… …   Scientists

  • R. Bruce Merrifield — Robert Bruce Merrifield Robert Bruce Merrifield Robert Bruce Merrifield (né le 15 juillet 1921 à Fort Worth au Texas ; mort le 14 mai 2006 à Cresskill dans le New Jersey), était un chimiste américain. En 1984, il obtint le prix Nobel de… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Robert Merrifield — Robert Bruce Merrifield Robert Bruce Merrifield Robert Bruce Merrifield (né le 15 juillet 1921 à Fort Worth au Texas ; mort le 14 mai 2006 à Cresskill dans le New Jersey), était un chimiste américain. En 1984, il obtint le prix Nobel de… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Merrifield — ist der Name mehrerer Orte in den Vereinigten Staaten: Merrifield (Kentucky) Merrifield (Minnesota) Merrifield (New York) Merrifield (North Dakota) Merrifield (Virginia) Personen: Robert Bruce Merrifield (1921–2006), US amerikanischer Chemiker,… …   Deutsch Wikipedia


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