Bengt I. Samuelsson Biography
(Swedish Biochemist and Winner of the 1982 Nobel Prize in Medicine)
Birthday: May 21, 1934 (Gemini)
Born In: Halmstad, Sweden
Bengt I. Samuelsson is a Swedish biochemist, who, along with Sune K. Bergström and John R. Vane, won the 1982 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine “for discoveries concerning prostaglandins and related biologically active substances". While studying medicine at the University of Lund, Samuelsson met his mentor, Sune K. Bergström, who at that time was working on prostaglandins at the same university. Although Samuelsson initially wanted to work on cholesterol metabolism, he soon changed his mind and joined Bergström’s team. Later, he followed his mentor to Karolinska Institute in Stockholm and there he continued both his medical studies and his graduate work. Subsequently after receiving his degrees, he joined his alma mater as Assistant Professor of Medical Chemistry and continued his research work with Bergström. After years of painstaking work, Samuelson was able describe the molecular structure of prostaglandins and also to show that the compound is derived from arachidonic acid. Later, he began to concentrate on the transformation products of arachidonic acid, which in turn led to the identification of endoperoxides, thromboxanes and the leukotrienes. He also showed how this acid combines with oxygen to form prostaglandins. In a symposium held in 2014, scientists from all over the world hailed him as the founder of the research field Lipid Mediators.