Quotes from Sidney Altman
"About seven years later I was given a book about the periodic table of the elements. For the first time I saw the elegance of scientific theory and its predictive power."
"At the MRC laboratory I started the work that led to the discovery of RNase P and the enzymatic properties of the RNA subunit of that enzyme."
"By the time I reached high school my father's grocery store had made our life adequately comfortable and I was able to choose, without any practical encumbrances, the subjects that I wanted to pursue in college."
"Eight months later, having left Columbia, I was studying physics in a summer program and working in Colorado when I decided to enroll as a graduate student in biophysics."
"For our immediate family and relatives, Canada was a land of opportunity."
"Furthermore, neither of our research groups set out in search of RNA catalysis."
"However, it was made clear to the first generation of Canadian-born children that the path to opportunity was through education."
"I am conscious of two events that sparked my early interest in science, the first being the appearance of the A-bomb."
"I should mention that while I was growing up, Einstein was presented as a worthy role model for a young boy who was good at his studies."
"I spent eighteen months as a graduate student in physics at Columbia University, waiting unhappily for an opportunity to work in a laboratory and wondering if I should continue in physics."
"I was born in Montreal in 1939, the second son of poor immigrants."
"Indeed, we are privileged to have been afforded the opportunity to study Nature and to follow our own thoughts and inspirations in a time of relative tranquillity and in a land with a generous and forward-looking government."
"It was from them that I learned that hard work in stable surroundings could yield rewards, even if only in infinitesimally small increments."
"My career at Yale followed a standard academic pattern with promotion through the ranks until I became Professor in 1980."
"My intention was to enroll at McGill University but an unexpected series of events led me to study physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology."
"Nevertheless, as is a frequent occurrence in science, a general hypothesis was constructed from a few specific instances of a phenomenon."
"No sacrifice was too great to forward our education and, fortunately, books and the tradition of study were not unknown in our family."
"The chemical details of catalysis by RNase P remain to be fully worked out although a rough picture of this reaction is now available."
"The mystique associated with the bomb, the role that scientists played in it, and its general importance could not fail to impress even a six-year old."
"The RNA World referred to an hypothetical stage in the origin of life on Earth."
"Thus, the pathways leading to the discoveries of RNA catalysis were not as direct as one might imagine from reading about the results in textbooks."
"We are united in the hope that every individual will someday enjoy at least the intellectual privileges we have had, if not always the material advantages."
"We are very fortunate to be recognized here in such an extraordinary manner for work that we enjoy."
"We soon suggested that the RNA subunit of RNase P was part of the active center of the enzyme, by analogy to the then current picture of the ribosome."
Total Quotes: 24
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