The Info List - Peter D. Mitchell

Peter Dennis Mitchell, FRS[1] (29 September 1920 – 10 April 1992) was a British biochemist who was awarded the 1978 Nobel Prize for Chemistry for his discovery of the chemiosmotic mechanism of ATP synthesis.[2][3]


1 Education and early life 2 Career and research

2.1 Chemiosmotic hypothesis

2.1.1 Protonmotive Q-cycle

2.2 Awards and honours

3 References

Education and early life[edit] Mitchell was born in Mitcham, Surrey
on 29 September 1920.[4] His parents were Christopher Gibbs Mitchell, a civil servant, and Kate Beatrice Dorothy (née) Taplin. His uncle was Sir Godfrey Way Mitchell, chairman of George Wimpey. He was educated at Queen's College, Taunton and Jesus College, Cambridge
Jesus College, Cambridge
where he studied the Natural Sciences Tripos
specialising in Biochemistry. He was appointed a research post in the Department of Biochemistry, Cambridge, in 1942, and was awarded a Ph.D. in early 1951 for work on the mode of action of penicillin.[5] Career and research[edit] In 1955 he was invited by Professor Michael Swann
Michael Swann
to set up a biochemical research unit, called the Chemical Biology Unit, in the Department of Zoology, at the University of Edinburgh, where he was appointed a Senior Lecturer
in 1961, then Reader in 1962, although ill health led to his resignation in 1963. From 1963 to 1965, he supervised the restoration of a Regency-fronted Mansion, known as Glynn House, at Cardinham
near Bodmin, Cornwall
- adapting a major part of it for use as a research laboratory. He and his former research colleague, Jennifer Moyle founded a charitable company, known as Glynn Research Ltd., to promote fundamental biological research at Glynn House and they embarked on a programme of research on chemiosmotic reactions and reaction systems.[6][7][8][9] [10] Chemiosmotic hypothesis[edit]

Oxidative phosphorylation

In the 1960s, ATP was known to be the energy currency of life, but the mechanism by which ATP was created in the mitochondria was assumed to be by substrate-level phosphorylation. Mitchell's chemiosmotic hypothesis was the basis for understanding the actual process of oxidative phosphorylation. At the time, the biochemical mechanism of ATP synthesis by oxidative phosphorylation was unknown. Mitchell realised that the movement of ions across an electrochemical potential difference could provide the energy needed to produce ATP. His hypothesis was derived from information that was well known in the 1960s. He knew that living cells had a membrane potential; interior negative to the environment. The movement of charged ions across a membrane is thus affected by the electrical forces (the attraction of positive to negative charges). Their movement is also affected by thermodynamic forces, the tendency of substances to diffuse from regions of higher concentration. He went on to show that ATP synthesis was coupled to this electrochemical gradient.[11] His hypothesis was confirmed by the discovery of ATP synthase, a membrane-bound protein that uses the potential energy of the electrochemical gradient to make ATP; and by the discovery by André Jagendorf that a pH difference across the thylakoid membrane in the chloroplast results in ATP synthesis.[12] Protonmotive Q-cycle[edit] Later, Peter Mitchell also hypothesized some of the complex details of electron transport chains. He conceived of the coupling of proton pumping to quinone-based electron bifurcation, which contributes to the proton motive force and thus, ATP synthesis.[13] Awards and honours[edit] In 1978 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry
Nobel Prize in Chemistry
"for his contribution to the understanding of biological energy transfer through the formulation of the chemiosmotic theory."[14] He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society
Fellow of the Royal Society
(FRS) in 1974.[1][15] References[edit]

^ a b c d Slater, E. C. (1994). "Peter Dennis Mitchell. 29 September 1920 – 10 April 1992". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 40: 282–305. doi:10.1098/rsbm.1994.0040.  ^ "The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography". 2004. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/51236.  ^ Peter D. Mitchell
Peter D. Mitchell
biography ^ NNDB. "Peter Mitchell Bio at NNDB". Retrieved 2007-03-23.  ^ Mitchell, Peter Dennis (1950). The rates of synthesis and proportions by weight of the nucleic acid components of a Micrococcus during growth in normal and in penicillin containing media with reference to the bactericidal action of penicillin (PhD thesis). University of Cambridge.  ^ Mitchell, P. (1966). "Chemiosmotic Coupling in Oxidative and Photosynthetic Phosphorylation". Biological Reviews. 41 (3): 445–502. doi:10.1111/j.1469-185X.1966.tb01501.x. PMID 5329743.  ^ Mitchell, P. (1972). "Chemiosmotic coupling in energy transduction: A logical development of biochemical knowledge". Journal of Bioenergetics. 3 (1): 5–24. doi:10.1007/BF01515993. PMID 4263930.  ^ Greville, G.D. (1969). "A scrutiny of Mitchell's chemiosmotic hypothesis of respiratory chain and photosynthetic phosphorylation". Curr. Topics Bioenergetics. 3: 1–78.  ^ Mitchell, P. (1970). "Aspects of the chemiosmotic hypothesis". The Biochemical Journal. 116 (4): 5P–6P. doi:10.1042/bj1160005p. PMC 1185429 . PMID 4244889.  ^ Mitchell, P. (1976). "Possible molecular mechanisms of the protonmotive function of cytochrome systems". Journal of Theoretical Biology. 62 (2): 327–367. doi:10.1016/0022-5193(76)90124-7. PMID 186667.  ^ Mitchell, P. (1961). "Coupling of Phosphorylation to Electron and Hydrogen Transfer by a Chemi-Osmotic type of Mechanism" (PDF). Nature. 191 (4784): 144–148. Bibcode:1961Natur.191..144M. doi:10.1038/191144a0. PMID 13771349.  ^ Jagendorf A. T. and E. Uribe (1966). "ATP formation caused by acid-base transition of spinach chloroplasts". Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 55: 170–177. doi:10.1073/pnas.55.1.170.  ^ Mitchell, Peter (1975-11-15). "The protonmotive Q cycle: A general formulation". FEBS Letters. 59 (2): 137–139. doi:10.1016/0014-5793(75)80359-0. ISSN 1873-3468.  ^ "Mitchell's 1978 Nobel speech". Retrieved 2007-03-23.  ^ "Fellowship of the Royal Society
Royal Society
1660-2015". London: Royal Society. Archived from the original on 15 July 2015. 

v t e

Laureates of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry


1901 Jacobus van 't Hoff 1902 Emil Fischer 1903 Svante Arrhenius 1904 William Ramsay 1905 Adolf von Baeyer 1906 Henri Moissan 1907 Eduard Buchner 1908 Ernest Rutherford 1909 Wilhelm Ostwald 1910 Otto Wallach 1911 Marie Curie 1912 Victor Grignard
Victor Grignard
/ Paul Sabatier 1913 Alfred Werner 1914 Theodore Richards 1915 Richard Willstätter 1916 1917 1918 Fritz Haber 1919 1920 Walther Nernst 1921 Frederick Soddy 1922 Francis Aston 1923 Fritz Pregl 1924 1925 Richard Zsigmondy


1926 Theodor Svedberg 1927 Heinrich Wieland 1928 Adolf Windaus 1929 Arthur Harden
Arthur Harden
/ Hans von Euler-Chelpin 1930 Hans Fischer 1931 Carl Bosch
Carl Bosch
/ Friedrich Bergius 1932 Irving Langmuir 1933 1934 Harold Urey 1935 Frédéric Joliot-Curie
Frédéric Joliot-Curie
/ Irène Joliot-Curie 1936 Peter Debye 1937 Norman Haworth
Norman Haworth
/ Paul Karrer 1938 Richard Kuhn 1939 Adolf Butenandt
Adolf Butenandt
/ Leopold Ružička 1940 1941 1942 1943 George de Hevesy 1944 Otto Hahn 1945 Artturi Virtanen 1946 James B. Sumner
James B. Sumner
/ John Northrop / Wendell Meredith Stanley 1947 Robert Robinson 1948 Arne Tiselius 1949 William Giauque 1950 Otto Diels
Otto Diels
/ Kurt Alder


1951 Edwin McMillan
Edwin McMillan
/ Glenn T. Seaborg 1952 Archer Martin
Archer Martin
/ Richard Synge 1953 Hermann Staudinger 1954 Linus Pauling 1955 Vincent du Vigneaud 1956 Cyril Hinshelwood / Nikolay Semyonov 1957 Alexander Todd 1958 Frederick Sanger 1959 Jaroslav Heyrovský 1960 Willard Libby 1961 Melvin Calvin 1962 Max Perutz
Max Perutz
/ John Kendrew 1963 Karl Ziegler
Karl Ziegler
/ Giulio Natta 1964 Dorothy Hodgkin 1965 Robert Woodward 1966 Robert S. Mulliken 1967 Manfred Eigen
Manfred Eigen
/ Ronald Norrish / George Porter 1968 Lars Onsager 1969 Derek Barton / Odd Hassel 1970 Luis Federico Leloir 1971 Gerhard Herzberg 1972 Christian B. Anfinsen
Christian B. Anfinsen
/ Stanford Moore / William Stein 1973 Ernst Otto Fischer
Ernst Otto Fischer
/ Geoffrey Wilkinson 1974 Paul Flory 1975 John Cornforth
John Cornforth
/ Vladimir Prelog


1976 William Lipscomb 1977 Ilya Prigogine 1978 Peter D. Mitchell 1979 Herbert C. Brown
Herbert C. Brown
/ Georg Wittig 1980 Paul Berg
Paul Berg
/ Walter Gilbert
Walter Gilbert
/ Frederick Sanger 1981 Kenichi Fukui
Kenichi Fukui
/ Roald Hoffmann 1982 Aaron Klug 1983 Henry Taube 1984 Robert Merrifield 1985 Herbert A. Hauptman
Herbert A. Hauptman
/ Jerome Karle 1986 Dudley R. Herschbach
Dudley R. Herschbach
/ Yuan T. Lee
Yuan T. Lee
/ John Polanyi 1987 Donald J. Cram
Donald J. Cram
/ Jean-Marie Lehn
Jean-Marie Lehn
/ Charles J. Pedersen 1988 Johann Deisenhofer
Johann Deisenhofer
/ Robert Huber
Robert Huber
/ Hartmut Michel 1989 Sidney Altman / Thomas Cech 1990 Elias Corey 1991 Richard R. Ernst 1992 Rudolph A. Marcus 1993 Kary Mullis
Kary Mullis
/ Michael Smith 1994 George Olah 1995 Paul J. Crutzen
Paul J. Crutzen
/ Mario J. Molina
Mario J. Molina
/ Frank Rowland 1996 Robert Curl
Robert Curl
/ Harold Kroto / Richard Smalley 1997 Paul D. Boyer
Paul D. Boyer
/ John E. Walker / Jens Christian Skou 1998 Walter Kohn
Walter Kohn
/ John Pople 1999 Ahmed Zewail 2000 Alan J. Heeger / Alan MacDiarmid / Hideki Shirakawa


2001 William Knowles / Ryoji Noyori / K. Barry Sharpless 2002 John B. Fenn / Koichi Tanaka
Koichi Tanaka
/ Kurt Wüthrich 2003 Peter Agre
Peter Agre
/ Roderick MacKinnon 2004 Aaron Ciechanover
Aaron Ciechanover
/ Avram Hershko
Avram Hershko
/ Irwin Rose 2005 Robert H. Grubbs
Robert H. Grubbs
/ Richard R. Schrock
Richard R. Schrock
/ Yves Chauvin 2006 Roger D. Kornberg 2007 Gerhard Ertl 2008 Osamu Shimomura
Osamu Shimomura
/ Martin Chalfie
Martin Chalfie
/ Roger Y. Tsien 2009 Venkatraman Ramakrishnan
Venkatraman Ramakrishnan
/ Thomas A. Steitz
Thomas A. Steitz
/ Ada E. Yonath 2010 Richard F. Heck
Richard F. Heck
/ Akira Suzuki / Ei-ichi Negishi 2011 Dan Shechtman 2012 Robert Lefkowitz
Robert Lefkowitz
/ Brian Kobilka 2013 Martin Karplus
Martin Karplus
/ Michael Levitt
Michael Levitt
/ Arieh Warshel 2014 Eric Betzig
Eric Betzig
/ Stefan Hell
Stefan Hell
/ William E. Moerner 2015 Tomas Lindahl
Tomas Lindahl
/ Paul L. Modrich
Paul L. Modrich
/ Aziz Sancar 2016 Jean-Pierre Sauvage
Jean-Pierre Sauvage
/ Fraser Stoddart
Fraser Stoddart
/ Ben Feringa 2017 Jacques Dubochet
Jacques Dubochet
/ Joachim Frank
Joachim Frank
/ Richard Henderson

v t e

Copley Medallists (1951–2000)

David Keilin
David Keilin
(1951) Paul Dirac
Paul Dirac
(1952) Albert Kluyver
Albert Kluyver
(1953) E. T. Whittaker
E. T. Whittaker
(1954) Ronald Fisher
Ronald Fisher
(1955) Patrick Blackett (1956) Howard Florey
Howard Florey
(1957) John Edensor Littlewood (1958) Frank Macfarlane Burnet
Frank Macfarlane Burnet
(1959) Harold Jeffreys
Harold Jeffreys
(1960) Hans Adolf Krebs
Hans Adolf Krebs
(1961) Cyril Norman Hinshelwood
Cyril Norman Hinshelwood
(1962) Paul Fildes
Paul Fildes
(1963) Sydney Chapman (1964) Alan Lloyd Hodgkin
Alan Lloyd Hodgkin
(1965) Lawrence Bragg
Lawrence Bragg
(1966) Bernard Katz (1967) Tadeusz Reichstein
Tadeusz Reichstein
(1968) Peter Medawar
Peter Medawar
(1969) Alexander R. Todd
Alexander R. Todd
(1970) Norman Pirie (1971) Nevill Francis Mott (1972) Andrew Huxley
Andrew Huxley
(1973) W. V. D. Hodge
W. V. D. Hodge
(1974) Francis Crick
Francis Crick
(1975) Dorothy Hodgkin
Dorothy Hodgkin
(1976) Frederick Sanger
Frederick Sanger
(1977) Robert Burns Woodward
Robert Burns Woodward
(1978) Max Perutz
Max Perutz
(1979) Derek Barton (1980) Peter D. Mitchell
Peter D. Mitchell
(1981) John Cornforth
John Cornforth
(1982) Rodney Robert Porter
Rodney Robert Porter
(1983) Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar
Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar
(1984) Aaron Klug
Aaron Klug
(1985) Rudolf Peierls
Rudolf Peierls
(1986) Robin Hill (1987) Michael Atiyah
Michael Atiyah
(1988) César Milstein
César Milstein
(1989) Abdus Salam
Abdus Salam
(1990) Sydney Brenner
Sydney Brenner
(1991) George Porter
George Porter
(1992) James D. Watson (1993) Frederick Charles Frank
Frederick Charles Frank
(1994) Frank Fenner (1995) Alan Cottrell
Alan Cottrell
(1996) Hugh Huxley (1997) James Lighthill
James Lighthill
(1998) John Maynard Smith
John Maynard Smith
(1999) Alan Battersby (2000)

v t e

Fellows of the Royal Society
Royal Society
elected in 1974


 Walter Bodmer William Boon Kenneth Burton John Cairns Roy Yorke Calne David Roderick Curtis John Frank Davidson Jack D. Dunitz Pehr Victor Edman John D. Eshelby Jack Halpern Stephen Hawking Volker Heine Robert Hinde Albert Edward Litherland James Lovelock Richard Matthews Drummond Matthews Peter D. Mitchell Samuel Victor Perry Norman James Petch John R. Philip John Polkinghorne Charles Rees John Rishbeth Roger Valentine Short John Trevor Stuart Robert Henry Stewart Thompson John Vane Frederick Vine Stephen Esslemont Woods Pierre Henry John Young

Statute 12

Vivian Fuchs


Renato Dulbecco George H. Hitchings Giuseppe Occhialini Jean-Pierre Serre

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 113492797 LCCN: n81114002 ISNI: 0000 0000 8410 7876 GND: 124876285 BNF: cb14571164s (data) SN