A professor of molecular and cellular physiology at Stanford University has been named one of two recipients of the 2012 Nobel Prize in chemistry.
Brian Kobilka, M.D., was recognized because of his work on G-protein-coupled receptors, which serve as one of the body's primary means of communication, according to the university. Kobilka and his team obtained the first three-dimensional image of a G-protein-coupled receptor bound to its signaling molecule, university officials said.
University officials said about 40 percent of all medications target such receptors, including medications for myriad of mental and physical conditions, including schizophrenia. Kobilka said in a statement that he hopes his research can lead to better and less-expensive drugs for patients.
He will share the Nobel honor and a $1.2 million grant from the Nobel committee with Duke University professor Robert Lefkowitz.
"I'm particularly surprised to be honored, because so many people have contributed to things that I've done," Kobilka said in a statement. "It's been a collaborative effort with researchers from around the world." He planned to discuss his work and the Nobel Prize at a morning news conference at Stanford University.