The 2021 Nobel Prize in Chemistry has been awarded to two scientists for their work on building molecules that are mirror images of one another.
Scotland based scientist David MacMillan and German-scientist Benjamin List were the laureates announced by the Nobel Prize authorities at an event in Stockholm.
Their chemical toolkit has been used for inventing molecules that can capture light in solar cells and preparing new drugs.
The prize money for the Chemistry Nobel award is 10 million krona which is equivalent to 11,45,428 US dollar which will be shared by them in equal parts.
Prof MacMillan from Princeton University said that he was dazed, confused and sentimental, while asked for his response about winning the prize. Prof List said that he thought it was a joke, when he received a call from Sweden. He said that winning the Nobel Prize took him by surprise.
Prof Peter Somfai, a Nobel Committee member, said that their findings were of much importance since chemists often want mirror images of molecules, particularly when producing medicines. An efficient method to produce a mirror image had been difficult to find.
Asymmetric organocatalysis, the scientific process which won the prize, has made it easier for producing asymmetric molecules which exists in two version where both of them are mirror images of one another.
Prof Somfai also added that if the body could differentiate between two mirror images, it could be applied to drugs which will be a breakthrough for studies in illness treatments.