Kornberg, Arthur

Kornberg, Arthur,

1918–2007, American biochemist, b. Brooklyn, grad. College of the City of New York (B.S., 1937) and Univ. of Rochester (M.D., 1941). In 1942 he joined the U.S. Public Health Service and became (1951) medical director. He was a staff member (1942–52) of the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md. He taught at Washington Univ., St. Louis, from 1953 and was chairman (1959–69) of the department of biochemistry at Stanford, where he remained until his death. Kornberg shared the 1959 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Severo OchoaOchoa, Severo
, 1905–93, American biochemist and educator, b. Spain, M.D. Univ. of Madrid, 1929. After teaching at the universities of Madrid, Heidelberg, and Oxford, he came to the United States in 1940.
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 for their work in the discovery of the mechanisms in the biological synthesis of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and ribonucleic acid (RNA). Kornberg's discovery of polymerase, an enzyme used to synthesize nucleic acid, contributed to development of genetic engineeringgenetic engineering,
the use of various methods to manipulate the DNA (genetic material) of cells to change hereditary traits or produce biological products. The techniques include the use of hybridomas (hybrids of rapidly multiplying cancer cells and of cells that make a
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Kornberg, Arthur


Born Mar. 3, 1918, in Brooklyn, N.Y. American biochemist.

Kornberg graduated from the City College of New York in 1937 and received his doctor of medicine degree from the University of Rochester in 1941. He worked at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda (1942-53) and Washington University Medical School (1953-59). He is presently head of the department of biochemistry at Stanford University Medical School (since 1959). Kornberg discovered and isolated the enzyme DNA polymerase, which carries out duplication of the DNA molecules during cell division. Using natural DNA as a “seeding” (matrix), he was the first to synthesize active DNA in a test tube. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1959, with S. Ochoa, for the discovery of the biosynthesis mechanism in nucleic acids.


Biosynthesis of DNA. University Park, Pa., 1964.
Enzymatic Synthesis of DNA. New York-London, 1961.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Kornberg, Arthur

(1918–  ) biochemist; born in New York City. He began working with enzymes at the National Institutes of Health (1942–53) with his wife and lifetime collaborator, Sylvy (Levy). At Washington University (St. Louis) (1953–59), he discovered the enzyme DNA polymerase, with which he synthesized nonreplicating DNA (1957). With mentor Severo Ochoa, he received the 1959 Nobel Prize in physiology for this breakthrough in molecular biology. Kornberg moved to Stanford (1959–88), where he succeeded in creating biologically active viral DNA (1967).
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Kornberg, Arthur. "Invention is the Mother of Necessity." The Globe and Mail, November 4, 2000, p.