JOHNS HOPKINS RESEARCHER CAROL GREIDER DESCRIBES HER NOBEL PRIZE WINNING RESEARCH. ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Carol Greider, a basic science researcher at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, has been awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine or Physiology for her work on an enzyme called telomerase. Here’s how Carol describes her work:
GREIDER: Turns out that every time a cell divides, the chromosome gets shorter and shorter and shorter and shorter from the ends, and the ends are called telomeres, so the end part of the chromosome. That gets shorter every time a cell divides, and what we were curious about was how it was that a cell can go on dividing if the telomeres are getting shorter. And in trying to understand that we discovered an enzyme called telomerase, which actually adds sequences back onto the chromosome ends, so instead of getting shorter they get longer. :30
Greider’s work has very important implications for understanding both how normal cells divide and maintain themselves as well as many cancers and other disease processes.