Nobel Prize in Chemistry Awarded to ASM Academy Fellow

Oct. 25, 2022

Washington, D.C. – ASM Academy of Microbiology fellow Dr. Carolyn R. Bertozzi, a professor at Stanford University and investigator at Howard Hughes Medical Institute, has earned the 2022 Nobel Prize in Chemistry along with collaborators Drs. Morten Meldal and K. Barry Sharpless for the development of click chemistry and bioorthogonal chemistry.

Carolyn Bertozzi
Source: Niklas Elmehed © Nobel Prize Outreach

Bertozzi took the concept of click chemistry – a simple and quick form of chemistry that avoids unwanted by-products (coined by Sharpless) – and elevated it to a new level by developing click reactions that work inside organisms without disrupting normal cell chemistry, bioorthogonal reactions. Bioorthogonal reactions are used globally to track biological processes, and they have potentially life-saving applications, such as improving the targeting of cancer pharmaceuticals, creating better tests for infectious diseases and developing more effective antibiotics.

“Click chemistry and bioorthogonal reactions have taken chemistry into the era of functionalism. This is bringing the greatest benefit to humankind,” the Royal Swedish Academy, who awards the Nobel Prizes, stated in their press release.

Bertozzi was inducted into the American Academy of Microbiology, ASM’s think tank and leadership group, in 2005. She is also a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Institute of Medicine, the National Academy of Inventors and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.


The American Society for Microbiology is one of the largest professional societies dedicated to the life sciences and is composed of 30,000 scientists and health practitioners. ASM's mission is to promote and advance the microbial sciences.

ASM advances the microbial sciences through conferences, publications, certifications, educational opportunities and advocacy efforts. It enhances laboratory capacity around the globe through training and resources. It provides a network for scientists in academia, industry and clinical settings. Additionally, ASM promotes a deeper understanding of the microbial sciences to diverse audiences.   

Author: ASM Communications

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