Schekman takes a call at home after getting the news. Photo: Carol Ness/UCB News
Schekman takes a call at home after getting the news. Photo: Carol Ness/UCB News

Randy W. Schekman, a professor of molecular and cell biology at the UC Berkeley, won the 2013 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine on Monday. He won the top prize for “his role in revealing the machinery that regulates the transport and secretion of proteins in our cells,” according to the university.

The prize was shared with Yale University Professor James E. Rothman and Thomas C. Südhof of Stanford University.

Schekman becomes UC Berkeley’s 22nd Nobel Laureate and the first to win in medicine. As one way of recognizing the award, UC gives its Nobel laureautes a coveted permanent parking space.

“My first reaction was, ‘Oh, my god!’ Schekman, 64, told UC Berkeley News about being awakened at his El Cerrito home at 1:30 a.m. “That was also my second reaction.”

TheNobel Assembly lauded the three winners for making known “the exquisitely precise control system for the transport and delivery of cellular cargo. Disturbances in this system have deleterious effects and contribute to conditions such as neurological diseases, diabetes, and immunological disorders.”

Dr. Schekman, “used yeast cells as a model system” and ” found that vesicles piled up in parts of the cell and that the cause was genetic,” according to the New York Times.

Read more about Schekman’s research and accomplishments here.

Nobel winner gets the real prize: A special parking permit (10.04.11)

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Frances Dinkelspiel, Berkeleyside and CItyside co-founder, is a journalist and author. Her first book, Towers of Gold: How One Jewish Immigrant Named Isaias Hellman Created California, published in November...