The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1967
Born: 18 November 1906, New York, NY, USA
Died: 12 April 1997, Cambridge, MA, USA
Affiliation at the time of the award: Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, USA
Prize motivation: "for their discoveries concerning the primary physiological and chemical visual processes in the eye."
Prize share: 1/3
Our vision functions because light from the surrounding world is captured by many light-sensitive cells in the retina at the back of the eye. George Wald found that vitamin A is an important component in rhodopsin, a light-sensitive substance in the retina, and explained in a series of studies from the 1930s to the 1960s how light causes rhodopsin to change form and be converted. This conversion gives rise to signals in a complicated network of nerve cells by which a number of reconnections and transformations occur before the signals eventually are transformed into visual impressions in the brain.
Their work and discoveries range from the Earth’s climate and our sense of touch to efforts to safeguard freedom of expression.
See them all presented here.