Members' Area
Get Involved
Science policy
About Us

Fred Sanger: sequencing pioneer

Fred Sanger: sequencing pioneer


20 November 2013 (London, UK)


The Biochemical Society is saddened to learn of the passing of Fred Sanger; a brilliant biochemist and a modest man whose passion lay in laboratory life.

Fred Sanger was awarded two Nobel Prizes in Chemistry and was only the fourth person ever to be awarded two such esteemed accolades. The first in 1958 was for his work ‘on the structure of proteins, especially that of insulin’ and the second, in 1980 shared with Walter Gilbert and Paul Berg, for work on base sequences in DNA. 


Fred Sanger kindly donated his laboratory notebooks (1944-1981) to the Society providing an important snap shot in the history of science and a record of experiments leading to his award winning work. Fred Sanger was awarded Honorary Membership from the Biochemical Society in 1984.


Professor Colin Kleanthous, Chairman of the Biochemical Society said, ‘Fred Sanger’s research played a fundamental role in the development of molecular techniques for dissecting biological processes. His discoveries were the starting point for the latest advances in genomics and proteomics research that are so vital to current biochemical research in universities and industry. His work inspired and continues to inspire biochemists throughout the world.’