The sense of smell has remained the most enigmatic of the senses. The work of Drs. Axel and Buck has provided understanding on how the nose is able to distinguish more than 10,000 distinct smells. The researchers discovered a gene pool of more than 1,000 different genes that encode olfactory receptors in the nose that detect odors and olfaction. This is believed to be the largest gene family in the human genome.
"I'm deeply honored and very pleased," said Dr. Axel. "This honor represents the long efforts of the many faculty, students and fellows who have worked within our laboratories at Columbia University Medical Center. I have received enormous support over the years beginning with the scholarship I received to attend Columbia College. I have to also thank the National Institutes of Health and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute that allowed the performance of truly novel experiments by our research team."
Dr. Richard Axel is University Professor, Columbia University, and Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute at the College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University Medical Center. He has been at Columbia University Medical Center his entire career, and was an undergraduate at Columbia College.
Axel and Buck join a group of 70 notable Columbians whose work has been recognized by the Nobel Foundation, including 19 in the category of physiology or medicine.
"Columbia University is honored that our esteemed faculty member, Richard Axel, has received the Nobel Prize for his pioneering studies clar
Contact: Craig LeMoult
Columbia University Medical Center