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Nobel Prize 2010 Predictions

September 26, 2010

After two week long hiatus from blogging, I am back. During this time, I attended LIBS 2010 conference in Memphis and had a great time meeting fellow researchers. I will be a bit busy in coming month, so frequency of posts will be less but I will try to write from time to time. So, without any further delay, let’s get started, shall we :).

Nobel prizes are going to be announced on Oct 6th during Oct 4th- 11th. Any guesses who are top contenders this year for different fields? Well, Thomson Reuters has predicted possible winners based on it’s data from Web of Knowledge. The prediction is based upon citation counts over past two decades and number of high impact papers in certain identified fields and research themes which might be worthy of Nobel prize in current year or in future. Since 2002, Thomson Reuters have been able to predict 19 such Nobel prize winners.

“We choose our Citation Laureates by assessing citation counts and the number of high-impact papers while identifying discoveries or themes that may be considered worthy of recognition by the Nobel Committee,” said David Pendlebury, Citation Analyst, Research Services, Thomson Reuters. “A strong correlation exists between citations in literature and peer esteem.  Professional awards, like the Nobel Prize, are a reflection of this peer esteem. [Thomson Reuters]

So who are possible contenders this year? [Source: Thomson Reuters]

Chemistry: Winner Richard F. Heck, Ei-ichi Negishi and Akira Suzuki for “palladium-catalyzed cross couplings in organic synthesis”

Patrick O. Brown
Professor, Department of Biochemistry, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, Calif., USA and Investigator,
Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Chevy Chase, Md.,USA

  • For the invention and application of DNA microarrays, a revolutionary tool in the study of variation in gene expression.
Susumu Kitagawa
Deputy Director, Institute for Integrated Cell-Material Sciences and Professor, Department of Synthetic Chemistry and Biological Chemistry, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan
-and-Omar M. Yaghi
Jean Stone Professor, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, Calif.,USA

  • For the design and development of porous metal-organic frameworks, whose applications include hydrogen and methane storage, gas purification, and gas separation, among others.
Stephen J. Lippard
Arthur Amos Noyes Professor, Department of Chemistry, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Mass.,USA

  • For pioneering research in bioinorganic chemistry, including the discovery of metallointercalators to disrupt DNA replication, an important contribution to improved cancer therapy.


Physics: Winner Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov for pathbreaking work in graphene. They were predicted to win Nobel Prize in 2008 by Thomson Reuters predicitons.

Charles L. Bennett
Professor, Department of Physics & Astronomy, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md.,USA and Senior Scientist for Experimental Cosmology, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md., USA
-and-Lyman A. Page
Henry DeWolf Smyth Professor of Physics, Department of Physics, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ., USA
-and-David N. Spergel
Charles Young Professor of the Class of 1897 Foundation and Chair, Department of Astrophysical Sciences, Princeton University, Princeton, N.J., USA

  • For discoveries deriving from the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP), including the age of the universe, its topography, and its composition.
Thomas W. Ebbesen
Professor, University of Strasbourg, and Director, ISIS (Institute of Science and Supramolecular Engineering), Strasbourg, France

  • For observation and explanation of the transmission of light through subwavelength holes, which ignited the field of surfaceplasmon photonics.
Saul Perlmutter
Professor, Department of Physics, University of California Berkeley, Berkeley, Calif., USA and Senior Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, Calif., USA
-and-Adam G. Riess
Professor, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md., USA and Senior Member, Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore, Md., USA
-and-Brian P. Schmidt
Australian Research Council Federation Fellow, Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Australian National University, Weston Creek, Australia

  • For discoveries of the accelerating rate of the expansion of the universe, and its implications for the existence of dark energy.


Physiology or Medicine: Winner Robert G Edwards for in vitro fertilization

Douglas L. Coleman
Senior Staff Scientist Emeritus, Jackson Laboratory, Bar Harbor, Maine, USA
-and-Jeffrey M. Friedman
Marilyn M. Simpson Professor, Laboratory of Molecular Genetics, Rockefeller University, New York, N.Y., USA and Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Chevy Chase, Md., USA

  • For the discovery of leptin, a hormone regulating appetite and metabolism.
Ernest A. McCulloch
Senior Scientist, Ontario Cancer Institute, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
-and-James E. Till
Senior Scientist, Ontario Cancer Institute, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
-and-Shinya Yamanaka
Professor, Department of Stem Cell Biology, Institute of Frontier Medical Sciences, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan and Senior Investigator, Gladstone Institute of Cardiovascular Disease, San Franscisco, Calif., USA and Professor of Anatomy, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, Calif., USA

  • For the discovery of stem cells and the development of induced pluripotent stem cells.
Ralph M. Steinman
Henry G. Kunkel Professor and Senior Physician, Laboratory of Cellular Physiology and Immunology, Rockefeller University, New York, N.Y., USA

  • For the discovery of dendritic cells, key regulators of immune response.


Economics: Oct 11th

Albert Alesina
Nathaniel Ropes Professor of Political Economics, Department of Economics, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass., USA

  • For theoretical and empirical studies on the relationship between politics and macroeconomics, and specifically for research on politico-economic cycles.
Nobuhiro Kiyotaki
Professor of Economics, Department of Economics, Princeton University, Princeton N.J., USA
-and-John H. Moore
George Watson’s and Daniel Stewart’s Professor of Political Economics, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland, and Professor of Economics, Department of Economics, London School of Economics, London, England

  • For formulation of the Kiyotaki-Moore model, which describes how small shocks to an economy may lead to a cycle of lower output resulting from a decline in collateral values that create a restrictive credit environment.
Kevin M. Murphy
George J. Stigler Distinguished Service Professor of Economics, University of Chicago Booth School of Business, Chicago, Il., USA, and Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford, Calif., USA

  • For pioneering empirical research in social economics, including wage inequality and labor demand, unemployment, addiction, and the economic return on investment in medical research among other topics.

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1 Comment Leave a Comment

  • 1. Joe  |  September 26, 2010 at 11:41 pm

    First prize in announced on Monday 10/04 – Med, Physics is 10/05

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