Benjamin List and David MacMillan will share the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2021

Benjamin List and David W.C. MacMillan have been awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for developing “an inventive tool for manufacturing molecules” that has aided in developing new drugs and made chemistry more environmentally friendly. “For the development of asymmetric organocatalysis,” the medal was given to the duo in Stockholm, Sweden.
Their discovery “started a fundamentally new way of thinking for how to link together chemical compounds,” according to Pernilla Wittung-Stafshede, a member of the chemistry Nobel committee.
Catalysts are “essential tools for chemists,” yet scientists previously thought that there were only two types of catalysts: metals and enzymes.
The Nobel Prize in Chemistry will be presented to Benjamin List and David MacMillan in 2021 “because they independently developed the third form of catalysis in 2000,” according to a press announcement from the Nobel Committee.
“This catalysis notion is as simple as it is brilliant, and many people have asked why we didn’t conceive of it sooner,” says Johan Qvist, chair of the Nobel Committee for Chemistry.

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