---->当你坐在电脑前阅读这篇文章时,你的脑海里可能会闪过无数的想法。“这个故事将走向何方?”“我今天午餐吃什么?”“这个博客太棒了!”但你可能没想过你是如何读懂它的。你是否经常想过屏幕发出的光是如何穿过你眼睛的角膜和晶状体,触发视网膜上的感光细胞,并将视觉信息发送到大脑的?在你考虑这个问题的同时,也考虑给罗伯特·j·莱夫科维茨(Robert J. Lefkowitz)和布莱恩·k·科比尔卡(Brian K. Kobilka)发一封祝贺信,祝贺他们今天获得诺贝尔化学奖。他们在过去几十年里的工作揭示了g蛋白偶联受体(GPCR)的内部工作原理,这是一个细胞受体家族,包括你眼睛里的光受体,以及肾上腺素、味觉和嗅觉受体。GPCRs是细胞的一个重要信号通路,使它们能够检测环境的变化并做出相应的反应。例如,当你的身体释放肾上腺素时,肾上腺素分子会附着在细胞壁外面的GPCR上。 The receptor changes shape, allowing a G-protein inside the cell to bind to the receptor and activate. The activated protein breaks apart, which sets off a chain of reactions inside of the cell to change its metabolism. The story of the discovery of GPCRs begins in the late 1960s, when Robert Lefkowitz was tasked with finding the mechanism that cells used to detect changes in their environment. By adding a radioactive isotope to adrenaline and noradrenaline, he was able to identify adrenergic receptors and observe how they worked. Later, Lefkowitz recruited Brian Kobilka to identify the genes that code the adrenergic receptors. Kobilka’s findings showed that the adrenergic receptors were structurally similar to other receptors in the body that had completely different functions. They suddenly realized that those receptors comprised an entire family of receptors that function in the same way, but to different stimuli: the G-protein-coupled receptors. The work done by Robert Lefkowitz and Brian Kobilka has answered a long standing question about how cells receive and process chemical signals. This knowledge is already being put to use to create drugs and therapies that manipulate cells more precisely, encouraging malfunctioning cells to work properly. Whether you spare a thought for them or not, the GPCRs in your body are always at work for you, regulating your body and letting you experience life. The original press release announcing the winners of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry as well as additional information about their work can be found这里