Cori, Carl Ferdinand

Cori, Carl Ferdinand,

1896–1984, and

Gerty Theresa Cori

(kōr`ē, kôr`ē), 1896–1957, American biochemists, b. Prague. Soon after receiving their medical degrees and marrying, they emigrated to the United States (1922), where they pursued their joint researches into the biochemical pathway by which glycogenglycogen
, starchlike polysaccharide (see carbohydrate) that is found in the liver and muscles of humans and the higher animals and in the cells of the lower animals. Chemically it is a highly branched condensation polymer of glucose; it is readily hydrolyzed to glucose.
..... Click the link for more information.
, the storage form of sugar in liver and muscle, is broken down into glucoseglucose,
or grape sugar,
monosaccharide sugar with the empirical formula C6H12O6 . This carbohydrate occurs in the sap of most plants and in the juice of grapes and other fruits.
..... Click the link for more information.
. As part of this work, they also elucidated the molecular defects underlying a number of genetically determined glycogen storage diseases. For these discoveries the Coris received the 1947 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine.

Cori, Carl Ferdinand


Born Dec. 5, 1896, in Prague. American biochemist; member of the US National Academy and the Royal Society of London.

Cori graduated from the University of Prague in 1920. He joined the State Institute for the Study of Malignant Disease in Buffalo (USA) in 1922. He became a professor of biochemistry and pharmacology at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis in 1931. Cori’s main work, conducted with the assistance of his wife, Gerty Teresa Radnitz-Cori (born Aug. 15, 1896, in Prague; died Oct. 26, 1957, in St. Louis), has been devoted to the study of carbohydrate metabolism in animals. He discovered and isolated glucose-1-phosphate, or Cori ester, and discovered and investigated phosphoglucomutase, which catalyzes the reversible conversion of glucose-l-phosphate into glucose-6-phosphate. Cori isolated phosphorylase and studied the interconversion of phosphorylase A and phosphorylase B. He discovered transglucosidase, and he obtained phosphoglucomutase, glyceraldehydephosphate dehydrogenase, and aldolase from muscles in crystal form. He extracted pure hexokinase from yeast. Cori carried out a series of studies on the effect of hormones on enzymatic processes. He separated glucagon from insulin and extracted it from gastric mucosa. Cori was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1947 (jointly with G. Cori).


Honssay, B. A. “Carl F. and Gerty Cori.” Biochimica et biophysica Acta, 1956, vol. 20, no. 1, p. 11.