H. Gobind Khorana, 89, Nobel-Winning Scientist, Dies

H. Gobind Khorana at work in his M.I.T. laboratory in 1976.

The New York Times:

Dr. Khorana, who received his early schooling from his village teacher under a tree, advanced his education through scholarships and fellowships to become an authority on the chemical synthesis of proteins and nucleic acids, the large molecules in cells that carry genetic information.

Har Gobind Khorana was born in the village of Raipur in the Punjab region, which is now part of Pakistan. Not certain of the date, he said he was probably born on Jan. 9, 1922. He was the youngest of five children of a Hindu tax clerk for the British colonial government, who was dedicated to educating his children. His family was “practically the only literate family in the village inhabited by 100 people,” Dr. Khorana wrote. 

His aptitude for science was evident from the start. He received a scholarship to study chemistry at Punjab University, although he had been too shy to attend the required admissions interview. He received his bachelor’s degree from Punjab University in 1943 and his master’s from there in 1945.

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