The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 1980
Paul Berg, Walter Gilbert, Frederick Sanger
Interview with the 1980 Nobel Laureate in Chemistry, Walter Gilbert, 22 March 2009. The interviewer is Adam Smith, Editor-in-Chief of Nobelprize.org.
Walter Gilbert discusses his current ‘serious vocation’, photography, and its similarities to his previous work in science (4:12), growing up in an intellectual family and his truancy in high school prior to matriculating to Harvard (6:56), his doctorate in mathematics from Cambridge and meeting Jim Watson (10:32), and the lab visit and six papers that led him to switch from theoretical physics to molecular biology (13:53). He then discusses his ‘impossible’ research in the field (24:08), the chemical DNA sequencing process for which he was awarded the Nobel Prize (34:18), why this wasn’t patented (43:57), his transition to industry (51:24), his subsequent involvement in a number of biotech companies and the venture capital firm BioVentures (57:17), his role as Chairman of the Harvard Society of Fellows (1:15:09), and the advice he has for other scientists (1:23:16).