David Julius


David Julius

© Nobel Prize Outreach. Foto: Stefan Bladh.

David Julius
The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2021

Born: 4 November 1955, New York, NY, USA

Affiliation at the time of the award: University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA

Prize motivation: “for their discoveries of receptors for temperature and touch”

Prize share: 1/2


Our ability to sense heat, cold and touch is essential for survival and underpins our interaction with the world around us. In the late 1990s, David Julius investigated how temperature is translated into nerve impulses. He utilized capsaicin, a compound from chili peppers that induces a burning sensation, and DNA fragments, genes, which are active in heat-sensing neurons. One single gene was able to make cells capsaicin sensitive. Further experiments revealed that the gene encoded a heat-sensing receptor on the neurons.

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MLA style: David Julius – Facts – 2021. NobelPrize.org. Nobel Prize Outreach AB 2024. Mon. 17 Jun 2024. <https://www.nobelprize.org/prizes/medicine/2021/julius/facts/>

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